Internal Funding Opportunities

Office of Research and Economic Development

▼   Faculty Productivity Grant Program

DESCRIPTION: The Faculty Productivity Grant program (FPG) provides concentrated time for faculty to generate pilot or preliminary data that will enhance their competitiveness for a major grant or contract. 

DEADLINE: Requests should be made at least one semester prior to the requested re-assigned time.

FUNDING AMOUNT: The Office of Research and Economic Development (ORED) will provide funds for up to three (3) faculty “buy-outs” from teaching annually. 

PROGRAM AND APPLICATION GUIDELINES: Please see the full program and application guidelines for a detailed description of the program.

▼   Graduate Student Activities Enhancement Program

DESCRIPTION: The Graduate Student Activities Enhancement Program provides funding to support graduate student travel and/or scientific, creative/artistic or scholarly activities. The expectation is that no other funding is available to the student, mentor, and/or appointing department, school or college to support the travel or research, creative/artistic or scholarly activities.

DEADLINES: Cycle 2 (SUM/FALL) opens June 30, 2017 and closes January 30, 2018. Note: all funds for Cycle 1 (WIN/SPRG) have been awarded.

FUNDING AMOUNT: $30,000 has been allocated annually to support up to 15 awards of up to $2,000.

ELIGIBLE EXPENSES: Funding may be used to support:

  • Travel – including conference/meeting registration fees, transportation, lodging, per diem and incidentals (as specified in the USA Travel policy) to present at professional meetings/organizations;
  • Scientific, creative/artistic or scholarly materials and supplies, professional society/organization membership fees, permits, services in support of development of a thesis, dissertation, and / or career advancement activities.

ELIGIBILITY: Graduate students enrolled full-time in Master of Arts (MA), Masters of Science (MS), MBA, MFA, Ph.D., Au.D., DPT, D.Sc., DNP, DBA and D.Ed. programs are eligible to apply and receive an award.

PROGRAM GUIDELINES: Additional Program Details, including important eligibility criteria and funding qualifications may be found in the Graduate Student Activities Enhancement Program Guidelines.

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS: This program will be administered via the USA InfoReady Review platform ( ). A scanned copy of a completed and signed USA Transmittal Form must be included as part of the application package upload in InfoReady Review. For reference, a sample completed Transmittal Form can be found here

▼   Interdisciplinary Incentive Program

DESCRIPTION: The USA Interdisciplinary Incentive Program replaces the USA Incentive Plan (formally VPIP). The Interdisciplinary Incentive Program supports faculty who competitively seek funding for research across disciplines. The term “Interdisciplinary” is defined as projects that cross departments and/or discipline areas.

FUNDING AMOUNT: A total of $3,000 will be provided to the Lead Principal Investigator (Lead PI) (and Principal Investigators PI(s) – if appropriate), for each funded proposal that complies with the eligibility requirements. 

PROGRAM AND APPLICATION GUIDELINES: Please see the attached guidelines to claim the research incentive payout upon funding of an eligible award. Per the guidelines, applicants must submit the Interdisciplinary Incentive Program Eligibility and Disposition Form.

▼   Research and Scholarly Development Grant Program

DESCRIPTION: The Research and Scholarly Development Grant (RSDG) Program has been created to provide tenure and non-tenure track faculty with funding to help build their research and scholarly careers. RSDG grants are intended to stimulate interactions across disciplines, departments, colleges, and programs. The funding is designed to facilitate preliminary data collection or planning efforts to assist in the development of competitive proposals that will attract external funding.  Each RSDG proposal is required to demonstrate how funding for the project will lead directly to external funding requests.

DEADLINE: March 1, annually.

FUNDING AMOUNT: Awards are capped at $25,000. $125,000 has been allocated for the 2017-2018 Program.

ELIGIBLE EXPENSES: The award funds are to be used to:

  • Provide seed funding for new research projects
  • Provide resources for planning and executing a major grant submission

ELIGIBILITY: The current program guidelines reflect the eligibility criteria for individuals with "Instructor" titles, and specific instructions for College of Medicine applicants effective January 30, 2017.

PROGRAM GUIDELINES: Please download a copy of the 2017 Program and Application guidelines for detailed information about the process and application and submission requirements.  

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS: A USA Transmittal Form and supporting documentation (hardcopy of proposal, detailed budget and budget justification) must be signed by the Department Chair and Dean and submitted to the Office of Research Development and Learning in support of the application by the application deadline. For reference a sample completed Transmittal Form can be found Example Transmittal Form.  Applicants are responsible for uploading all of the required application materials via the InfoReady Review platform

▼   Seed Grant Program in Support of the Arts & Humanities
DESCRIPTION: The Seed Grant Program to Support the Arts and Humanities will provide funding to help support the Arts and Humanities faculty research and scholarly activities. The purpose of the program is to assist faculty in building their careers and contributing to their disciplines by exploring new scholarly, creative, and research activities.

DEADLINES: Submission deadlines are October 1 and March 1, annually.

FUNDING AMOUNT: $25,000 will be allocated annually for this program, with individual awards limited to a maximum of $1500.

ELIGIBILITY: Faculty in the departments of English, Communication, Modern and Classical Languages and Literature, History, Philosophy, Music, Theatre & Dance, and Visual Arts in the rank of assistant, associate, and full professor, (without regard to tenure status) are eligible with the exception of persons known to be in their last year of employment. NEW FOR FY2018: Applicants are REQUIRED to attend a workshop on developing an application for the Seed Grant Program. See our Research Education Events page for more information and to register.

PROGRAM GUIDELINES: Download the SGSAH Application Guidelines for detailed information about the process and application and submission requirements.

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS: Applications must be submitted through the InfoReady Review platform. NEW FOR FY2018: Administrative approval will be handled using the online Evisions Research Suite. This REPLACES the use of the paper USA Transmittal Form. See the Application Guidelines (downloadable above) for an Appendix on using Evisions to route proposals.


▼   NEW: Important Guidelines for Electronic Routing Using Evisions

As of October 1, 2017, the use of the Evisions Research Suite to obtain institutional approval REPLACES the use of the paper USA Transmittal Form for the following ORED-sponsored internal funding programs:

  • Graduate Student Activities Enhancement Award
  • Research and Scholarly Development Grant Award
  • Seed Grant in Support of the Arts and Humanities Award

Download a PDF with guidelines for using Evisions for proposal routing for these three programs.


USA Joint Initiative: Academic Affairs & Office of Research and Economic Development

▼   Galapagos Travel Award

DESCRIPTION: The University of South Alabama is partnering with the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and the Universidad San Francisco de Quito via their joint Galapagos Science Center to establish collaborative relationships that will provide opportunities for USA students and faculty.  

DEADLINES: Applications will be accepted continuously at any time.

FUNDING AMOUNT: Two awards will be supported annually for up to $4000 each.

ELIGIBLE EXPENSES: The travel funds will be used to begin preliminary research, create new student opportunities or pursue other collaborations.

ELIGIBILITY: Applicants for these travel funds must be USA Employees. The applicant’s dean or department chair must provide a portion of the funding. Applicants must have an initial collaboration setup with an individual at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, the Universidad San Francisco de Quito or at the Galapagos Science Center prior to requesting travel funds. The USA Office of Research and Economic Development or Provost Office can help with contacts at these organizations.

Each request for funding will be evaluated based upon: (a) the quality of the proposed project; (b) the development of a strategy to secure external funding, if appropriate; and (c) the record of achievement of the applicant given the applicant’s career stage.

Topics of interest with the Galapagos Science Center include, but are not at all limited to:

  1. Climatology, oceanography, seismology and volcanology;
  2. The biotic aspects of the terrestrial & marine systems of the Galapagos Archipelago;
  3. Relationships & interactions between the natural system & social system of the islands;
  4. Tourism and Hospitality;
  5. Health related research and services.

PROGRAM GUIDELINES: Download the Galapagos Travel Award Guidelines for more information.

APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS: This competition is being managed through the InfoReady Review platform at:  - click on “Galapagos Travel Award.” 

Internal Funding from Additional Units

▼   USA Graduate School/USA Faculty Development Council: Faculty Development Council Proposals

DESCRIPTION: USA Faculty Development Council (USAFDC) the USA Faculty Development Council internal award.  The purpose of the USAFDC grant is to initiate and strengthen faculty research, scholarship, and creative skills as well as to increase faculty/program competitiveness for external grants.  The Faculty Development Council also supports worthy projects for which external funding is not generally available.

DEADLINE: Monday, January 23, 2017. For additional information about the 2018 submission deadline call the Graduate School Office (460-6310) or contact the Graduate School with questions.

FUNDING AMOUNT: The maximum award for this grant is $5,000

PROGRAM GUIDELINES: The Proposal Application Template and Proposal Preparation Guidelines can be found on the Faculty Development Council website. Please have a look at these documents before preparing your proposal. They should answer questions you may have regarding the proposal.

▼   USA College of Arts and Sciences Funding Sources

The USA College of Arts and Sciences offers several research and travel grants. The 2016 Arts and Sciences Support and Development Award competition is now closed.  For additional information about these programs please see the program guidelines.

▼   Gulf Coast ADVANCE Fellowship
The USA Gulf Coast ADVANCE offers fellowship funding opportunities.  For more information please follow the link to the Gulf Coast ADVANCE homepage:
▼   Abraham A. Mitchell Cancer Research Fund
The Mitchell Cancer Institute has suspended this award mechanism at the present time.  If additional information becomes available about this opportunity it will be posted to this site.