Research Grants » Student Micro Grant Program

The Center has established a fund to assist eligible faculty and students in pursuing scholarly research projects that will examine the needs and opportunities of Pennsylvania’s nearly 3.4 million rural residents through a public policy lens. Research must be conducted under the supervision of a qualified faculty member.

The Center anticipates granting four to six awards of up to $2,500 per submission for the two upcoming grant cycles noted below.

Types of Projects

The Center is seeking research and scholarship that meet the following criteria:

  1. All projects must show a clear relationship to one or more of the Center's mandated research areas, which include: rural people and communities, economic development, local government finance and administration, community services, natural resources and the environm ent, educational outreach, rural values and social change, agriculture, and health and welfare concerns.
  2. All projects must include a public policy focus that could pertain to state, local, or federal governments, and/or other public service organizations serving the Commonwealth.

Projects may be completed as a class project that incorporates community-based learning (e.g., a research methods class that engages in a group project), an undergraduate or graduate student thesis project with significant faculty engagement, or related cooperative research experiences between faculty and students. 

Grant Awards

The maximum award is $2,500. All grant awards will be awarded to the university. The university is responsible for the distribution of funds. The Center does not pay for indirect costs.


Undergraduate and graduate students must work through a qualified faculty member at one or more of the following universities:

For the purposes of this program, the qualified faculty member will be considered the primary investigator/project director. Students will be considered co-investigators.

Ineligible Uses of Grant Awards

Timeframe for Projects

All research must be completed within six months after the start of the project contract, with a required progress report three months into the project.

Role of the Faculty Representative

All students must be supervised by a qualified university faculty representative. This faculty representative is considered the primary investigator for the purpose of the grant award. The faculty supervisor is responsible for:


All project teams must submit a report to the Center for Rural Pennsylvania. In addition, all data, survey instruments, or other relevant information and materials must be submitted to the Center at the conclusion of the project. All reports will become property of the Center for Rural Pennsylvania after completion and will be considered public domain (teams that would like to request a waiver to this rule should include an explanation in the application—e.g., graduate students seeking dissertation publication). 

A report may take the form of any of the following, and should be specified in the grant application:

  1. A manuscript of not less than 15 double-spaced pages (and no more than 25 pages) that complies with the Center’s style guidelines (including all references, tables, etc.).
  2. A research poster that is accompanied by an in-person presentation.
  3. A PowerPoint (or similar medium) that is accompanied by an in-person presentation or webinar.

Presentation details such as format and dates and/or locations will be determined at the time the contract is awarded.

Application Process

There are two grant cycles for Student Micro Grant Program. The deadlines for grant applications are:

Review Process

Center staff will review all proposals and all funding decisions will be based on:

Student Micro Grant Application

Application Questions (PDF)

Please click here to access the grant application:

For more information, contact Pam Frontino, Program Manager for Grants, at, or call (717)787-9555