Student Team Grants

Applications for 2024 awards are closed.

Are you and a group of fellow students excited about testing a new idea or exploring a compelling research question? Do you want to extend work that you started through a course, extra-curricular activity, or Bass Connections, DukeEngage, Data+ or Story+ project?  

Bass Connections and the Undergraduate Research Support Office are pleased to support this research grant program for students involved in collaborative team-based research projects. This research award will provide funds of up to $5,000 to support collaborative research projects involving two or more students. Funds will be awarded for a period of one year, and five to eight awards will be issued each year.   

Projects can address a broad range of research topics and result in an array of research outputs, from traditional theses, research papers and conference presentations to prototypes, exhibits, websites and media campaigns, data sets and apps, performances, and more! 

Proposals for 2024 awards will open on November 13. At that time, you may work directly within the online form and save and return to the form as you work. You may also preview the proposal questions and draft your responses using the following Word template.

Proposals for 2024 awards will open on November 13, 2023.

  • Purpose: Support for collaborative, student-driven research projects involving Trinity undergraduate students (offered in partnership with the Duke Undergraduate Research Support Office)*
  • Funding: Up to $5,000
  • Eligibility: Projects must include two or more students, at least one of whom must be a Trinity undergraduate student. Applicants must be active students during the grant period.
  • Timeline: Calls for proposals will be issued each November for projects starting in May; funds will be awarded for a period of one year (e.g., May 1, 2024 – April 30, 2025).

*If you are seeking funding for a project that does not include a Trinity undergraduate student, consider applying for the Bass Connections Student Research Award 

Proposal requirements: 

All proposals must be submitted through the online proposal form. You may work directly within the online form and save and return to the form as you work. You may also preview the proposal questions and draft your responses using the following Word template. For planning purposes, key proposal elements include:

  • Details about the team composition 
  • A description of the project including an abstract, a research plan, information about how the team will operate and how the project will contribute to the development of student team members, and a timeline
  • Project details including whether the project includes research with animals or human subjects, and a risk management plan for any projects involving fieldwork
  • Budget (see additional guidance below)
  • Letter of recommendation from a faculty mentor: Your faculty mentor should submit their letter of recommendation directly by email to by February 20, 2024 at 5:00 p.m. Your mentor’s letter should address the scholarly value of your research project, their assessment of your preparedness for completing the project, and how they intend to support you (including how often the mentor and students will meet; how the mentor will provide guidance, oversight, and assistance; and an acknowledgement of their willingness to help students process expenses through the Duke system).

Budget limitations: 

When submitting a proposal, you will be asked to submit a detailed budget plan for the entire proposed project, noting other sources of funding that you have secured or applied for. Maximum funding for this award is $5,000.  

For planning purposes, please note the following limitations, which may be subject to change.  

Reasonable expenses include: 
  • Fees associated with use of archives, lab equipment, etc. 
  • Software licenses 
  • Research participant incentives 
  • Research supplies and materials 
  • Transcription services 
  • Books/training to support your research 
  • Travel for field research that cannot be conducted remotely
  • Summer housing expenses to allow students to conduct research in instances when students need to be on-site 
Funds may not be used: 
  • As stipend or salary
  • To purchase personal equipment or durable items costing more than $1,000 (cameras, computers, clothing, etc.)
  • To cover personal living expenses at a permanent residence (funds may only be used to cover temporary living expenses to conduct field research, which can include Durham during the summer only)
  • To cover personal taxes

Please note that neither of these lists are all-inclusive, but rather are intended to help you consider common, allowable expenses. 

Funds will generally be administered via a Duke “fund code.” To process expenditures, students will need to work with their faculty advisor to use a departmental purchase card, or file for reimbursement. Some expenses (such as housing) will be issued as a non-compensatory payment to students and will be considered taxable income.  

Student Reflections:

Read reflections from previous grantees:

  1. Art, Fear, and Healthcare: Exploring Healthcare Literacy through the Visual Arts by Fatima Massare Somers
  2. Information, Perceptions, and Public Health by Brooke Bier and Taylor Parker
  3. Alzheimer's No More: Targeting neuroinflammation-related neurodegeneration by Lucy Zhang, Paul Kim, Yasuhiko Komatsu, Yiru Li, and Angela Addae


For questions or more information about the Student Team Grants program, please contact  

These research awards are supported by the Eberts Family Fund, and are administered by the Undergraduate Research Support Office in partnership with Bass Connections. 

  • URS Administered Program
  • Biological Science
  • Creative Arts
  • Engineering
  • Health Sciences
  • Humanities
  • Physical and Quantitative Science
  • Programming
  • Social Science
  • Academic Year
  • Summer