Start Something Big
Grant Award

Start Something Big Grant Program

The EWU Foundation Start Something Big (SSB) Program seeks innovative proposals from faculty and staff that will enhance the university and its mission, support the university’s Strategic Plan, provide opportunities for development and research as well as increase student participation. Start Something Big Grants provide funding for new initiatives only.

There are two (2) grant categories being offered to faculty and staff. Category 1 is for requests ranging from $1,000 – $5,000. Category 2 is for fund requests ranging from $5,001- $25,000. The changes to the SSB Grant are to encourage something big, to be substantive and to transform lives.

Instructional Design & Delivery: Proposals must reflect innovation and creativity in reshaping a curriculum and may propose new approaches to subject matter or new subjects altogether.

Research: Projects must enhance instruction and provide for substantive student participation in the project.

Student Services: Projects which expand and support the university’s commitment to student success are welcome.

Community Engagement: Proposals which engage faculty, students and staff with community groups are welcome. Proposals may provide for student participation in professional activity that may benefit their future careers.

These applications must be an innovative proposal to START SOMETHING BIG. The proposals are required to follow the same guidelines and requirements as the category 1 grant proposals. The award/s can range from $5,001 to $25,000. The committee will review the proposals and select 2-4 applications for presentation to the committee. The committee will then determine the awardee/s.

The EWU Foundation Start Something Big Committee will review proposals twice each academic year. Proposal packets (and all copies) must be received in the EWU Foundation, 102 Hargreaves Hall, Cheney WA 99004 or HAR102 (campus mail address) by the dates noted below. Please note that late submissions will not be accepted. The committee will review applications/proposals in accordance with published guidelines. A notification letter of the committee’s decision on each proposal will be sent to the specific applicant.

Category 1

  • Category 1: By the third Wednesday of October at 5 p.m. (during fall quarter)
  • Category 2: By the third Wednesday of January at 5 p.m. (during winter quarter)

  1. Applications to Provost office for signature
  2. Provost’s office sends applications and copies to the Foundation office (HAR 102)
  3. Applications are reviewed by Accounts Payable to determine if specific projects have department funding in foundation account
  4. Development Director review applications to determine if the application should go to a Development Officer for fundraising
  5. If an application is a re-submission of a previous proposal with no substantive changes, the application will be returned to the applicant
  6. Once the applications are refined, packages are prepared and sent to the SSB Grant Committee
  7. The committee will review and determine the awards
  8. The applications not receiving an award will be given to the Development Director to distribute to the appropriate Development Officer for fundraising potential
  9. All applicants will receive a letter advising them of the committee decision

The EWU Foundation Start Something Big (SSB) Program seeks innovative proposals from faculty and staff that will enhance the university and its mission, support the university’s Strategic Plan, provide opportunities for development and research as well as increase student participation.

Since 2010 Eastern Washington University Foundation has awarded more than $325,000 in grants to faculty and staff impacting student success.

Download SSB Grant Application Packet (Revised November 18, 2019)

2020 Snapshot

Category 1

  • 20 applications were received
  • Eight proposals were awarded funding
  • Two proposals were fully funded, while six received partial funding
  • The total amount awarded was $25,451

2018-2019 Snapshot

Category 1

  • 21 applications were received
  • 15 proposals were awarded funding (two proposals declined funding due to event cancellations)
  • Three proposals were fully funded, while 12 proposals received partial funding
  • The total amount awarded was $28,048

Category 2

  • 21 applications were received
  • Five proposals were asked to make a presentation to the SSB Grant Committee
  • One proposal was fully funded, while one proposal received partial funding
  • The total amount awarded was $42,295.24

Awarded Proposals

QuarterName(s)Department(s)Proposal TitleProposal Description
Fall 2019Eric AbbeySynthesis and Structural Characterization of Highly Crystalline PPN Borohydride DerivativesThese funds will be used to adequately supply research and help this project move toward completion.
Fall 2019Jonathan JohnsonCreative WritingThe Desk on the Sea: An Adaptation from the Memoir for the StageFunds will help develop and present a script, The Desk on the Sea, as a stage adaptation. Funds will be used to hire three actors and production management.
Fall 2019Merri JonesDental HygieneUsing Education Videos in Community Health Education and Health PromotionThe project is part of a course in dental public health, where students provide education through community outreach in partnership with five community organizations.
Fall 2019Amber McConnell, Ashley Lamm, Viktoria TaroudakiChemistry, MathematicsWomen at EWU STEM (WE-STEM) SymposiumThe Women in Science student club of EWU will host a WE-STEM symposium in early March 2020. The symposium will be open to EWU students, high school students, and local Cheney/Spokane schools.
Fall 2019Uri RogersEngineering, DesignStudent Projects in Autonomous Quadcopter Flight ControlThese funds will allow this project to move forward and transition to buying hardware and equipment that EWU Engineering students will use for this course/project.
Fall 2019Susan RubyPsychologySocial Emotional Learning for Eastern WashingtonThe aim of this project is to fund the time and travel for a Social Emotional Learning (SEL) keynote speaker and consultant.
Fall 2019Michael WaldropMusicJoe McCarthy Concert/Clinic/Guest ResidencyThis funding allows the Music Department to bring in a guest artist to enable the percussion students to interact closely with a world class professional performer.
Fall 2019Tony MasielloChemistryConstruction of a Cavity Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy SystemThe goal of this project is to allow for the construction of a system that will facilitate the recording of high-resolution Raman spectra of gases.
Winter 2019Jason AshleyBiologyAnalysis of Protein Expression and ModificationThe goal of this project is to better understand modification of and interactions between proteins under different conditions. Specifically glycosylation, the process by which sugar molecules are attached to proteins. In order to effectively analyze these proteins, funds will be used to purchase a digital Western blot imaging system.
Winter 2019Martin GarciaChicana/o/x Studies1st Annual EWU Cinco de Mayo Latino ForumThis funding will be used for the planning, facilitating and hosting of the 1st Annual EWU Cinco de Mayo Forum. This forum will increase the visibility of EWU within the Latino community in Washington, engaged Latino leaders, explore effective strategies for the recruitment, retention and graduation of Latino student populations, and develop a stronger nexus and collaboration with the Latino community and its partners.
Fall 2018Jenifer Walke, Jennifer Pfeifer-ProbertBiologyBringing the Buzz: Community Education and Engagement for Pollinator HealthTo expand the breadth and community access to the upcoming Pacific Northwest Bee Conference by offering a pre-conference luncheon for EWU students, faculty and staff, and a post-conference family outreach event for the local community.
Fall 2018Ann Van WigEducationPartners in Reading: On-Site Tutoring ClinicThe purpose of this proposed project is to collaborate within our community and create an after-school reading clinic to improve K-6 student literacy skills and enhance EWU education students teaching methods.
Fall 2018Hani SaadMechanical EngineeringImproving MENG 242 Through the Use of In-Class DemosThe purpose of this project is to provide qualitative and quantitative class demonstrations for the MENG 242: Dynamics class.
Fall 2018Michael WaldropMusicMarko Djordjevic Concert/Clinic/Guest ResidencyThe EWU Music Department proposes bringing Marko Djordjevic, Professor of Music from the renowned Berklee College of Music in Boston. Professor Djordjevic is renowned as one of the finest jazz percussionists/drummers in the world.
Fall 2018John Gerber, Garth BabcockPEHRClinical Preceptor EnhancementThe aim of this project is to improve the quality of the PEHR students' education during their clinical rotations in the athletic training setting.
Fall 2018Suzie Henning, Carissa GranEducationTigers and Trauma Informed PracticeTrauma-informed pedagogy in education involve critical conversations for all educators. Through this project, the goal is to bring together EWU teaching candidates, faculty and community partners to discuss this crucial work together.
Fall 2018Natalie KuszEnglishWITC Resource Library and Student Publication LaunchWriters in the Community (WITC) is an internship opportunity wherein graduate students gain both professional and public service experience, teaching creative writing in cooperation with community organizations that serve Spokane's most diverse populations.
Fall 2018Tracy McHenryEnglishWorld Relief Refugee SimulationAs refugees and immigrants incresingly join our community, we strive to prepare students to understand and plan for the experiences that newcomers (especially refugees) bring with them to the classroom. World Relief is a Spokane non-profit that offers a refugee simulation, where 16-30 people are split up into refugee "families" and go through simulations mimicking medical screening, food acquisition, and an English class.
Fall 2018Cynthia NasmanMusicSmithsonian Folkways Certification Course in World Music PedagogyTraditional artist-musicians, culture-bearers, and experienced teachers will form the faculty for this one-week intensive workshop in world music pedagogy. This workshop will guide participants through experiences in music cultures via song, story, movement, dance, and instrumental music.
Fall 2018Judy RohrerWomen's and Gender StudiesWomen's and Gender Studies Course Marketing and DesignAs part of an overall curriculum review, the Women's and Gender Studies program intends to work on their course marketing and design. For the core courses, Women's and Gender Studies would develop professional marketing materials that could be used for several years.
Fall 2018Naomi Yavneh KlosHonors CollegeHonors First Year Experience: Coursework for the Common GoodThis proposal seeks to support faculty development and collaborative work in the creation of new honors-specific First Year Experience seminars (FYE) that will fulfill one of three required breadth requirements while introducing civic responsibility and social justice concepts through a service-learning or community-engaged experience.
Fall 2018Ryan ParreyDisability Studies2019 Pacific/Western Disability StudiesThe Pacific/Western Disability Studies Symposium will be a two-day Riverpoint Campus event for approximately 100 attendees. The symposium will entail four to five breakout session each day, including paper workshops, panel discussions, and networking opportunities for students, professionals and scholars.
Fall 2018Terrance MacMullanPhilosophyPublic Philosophy Night at the Downtown Spokane Public LibraryThis event will share and celebrate philosophy and ideas through lectures, discussions, screenings and performances. It is organized by the EWU philosophy students and professors who created the Inland Northwest Public Philosophy (INPP), a cooperative project of professors and students committed to reclaiming philosophy's original role as a public practice focused on transforming communities through civic discourse and intellectual discussions.