Apply for funding


Cycles will open on the following dates:

  • March 15 – April 15 (ideal for events starting in Summer Term)
  • June 15 – July 15 (ideal for events starting in Fall Semester)
  • October 15 – November 15 (ideal for events starting in IAP & Spring Semester)

Proposal characteristics

  • Consideration will be given to proposals of both modest and broad scope. Proposals might be for one-time events, a series of events, or a program.
  • A proposal will be evaluated based on the extent to which it identifies and addresses a community need; its feasibility; and its potential impact.
    • Community: Explain the need and how your proposal addresses that need.
    • Feasibility: Clarify that the effort is achievable within the proposed time frame and budget; explain why the project team is the appropriate one to implement your idea.
    • Impact: How will your proposal make a difference?

Funding restrictions

  • Funding will not cover the following:
    • equipment (cameras, computers, furniture)
    • start-up activities or research
    • alcohol
    • air travel
    • payments to guest speakers (i.e. honoraria) (we do not typically fund honoraria but may consider under certain circumstances)
    • stipends for proposal authors; proposal authors are expected to volunteer their time
    • past events (i.e. events that have already occurred)


See sample budget and template with cost guidelines.

  • Total funding requested
    Note any additional sources of funding, including grants from other offices, departmental funding, and ticket revenue.
  • Detailed breakdown of how funds will be spent
    • number of participants
    • number of events
    • cost of publicity
    • cost of food and beverages
    • cost of local transportation
    • cost of materials and services
    • budget for police detail and licensing fees, as necessary
  • If you have an MIT account number you are using for this project, include it along with the account supervisor. Please note: your MIT student ID is not an account number; be sure to ask if you have questions.

Event planning

Think through your plan and its implications. Please refer to the Event Planning Guide as well.

  • Can you imagine any liabilities such as a potential for people to be hurt or damage to property? How can you plan to reduce risk?
  • Does your proposal involve another student group or MIT office? Make sure to reach out to them to secure their participation in your proposal.

If your event or activity will include any of the following, it must be registered via Atlas (below pertains to in person activities and does not apply for events during Spring 2021). Please refer to the Institute Events policy and COVID-19 event restrictions.

  • you are expecting more than 100 attendees at an event
  • more than 20% of attendees are not members of the MIT community
  • events are cosponsored with a non-MIT partner
  • alcohol will be served (please note that grant funds may not be used to purchase alcohol, however it may be served at your event)
  • there will be entertainment
  • minors will be in attendance

Please note that special policies apply when you are using MIT funds to rent a car or will screen a movie.

For large events, the Institute Event Planning Guide is a comprehensive resource.


The Office of Graduate Education seeks input from graduate students and administrators in their decision process. We may request further details about your proposal; recommend minor changes; and/or offer a grant total that is more or less than what you requested.

All proposals will be reviewed on a rolling basis as they are received. You will learn if your proposal has been approved within three to four weeks from the deadline, and a contract will be sent to you that spells out terms for acceptance of your grant funding. Before receiving funds, you must agree to submit a report when your project is finished.

Reporting on your project

All grant authors are required to report on their project, which includes a summary of each event or activity, including but not limited to budgeting, descriptions, and demographic data (number of grad students and their department affiliation, etc.) on attendees. Here is the link to report on your project.