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FAQs - Home - Morgridge Center for Public Service

By Carmen Gardner,2014-05-27 12:32
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FAQs - Home - Morgridge Center for Public Service

    Wisconsin Idea Undergraduate Fellowships

    Frequently-Asked Questions

    Funding

    ; Do individual projects and group projects get the same amount of funding? What about

    projects that last for a year versus one that lasts just a semesterare they funded the

    same through the WIF?

    ; How is the WIF award distributed to the student, the faculty/instructional staff mentor,

    and the community partner?

    ; I‟m planning for a summer WIF project—do I have to pay tuition for enrolling in classes

    for the summer?

    ; Will a WIF award affect my financial aid?

    ; May I keep the stipend awarded to me through the WIF, or must it be applied to my

    project?

    ; May I apply for a WIF if I am concurrently receiving funding from a different campus-

    wide award (such as a fellowship or a scholarship)?

    ; How does a WIF differ from the Morgridge Center‟s other financial awards, such as the

    Kauffman Entrepreneurship Community Internship?

    Faculty/instructional staff mentors

    ; How should I approach a faculty member/instructional staff member about being my

    mentor if I do not know them already?

    ; I have two prospective faculty/instructional staff members, each from a different

    department, whom I would like to have as my mentor. Can I have two different

    faculty/instructional staff mentors?

    ; Two weeks ago, I contacted a faculty/instructional staff member about being my mentor

    and I still have not heard back from them. What should I do?

    ; Can my TA be my faculty/instructional staff mentor?

    ; I have contacted a faculty/instructional staff member who has agreed to be my mentor,

    but they are going on leavecan I still work with them?

    Community partners

    ; I have an idea, but I don‟t have a community partner organization selected yet. What are

    good ways to go about locating one?

    ; I have two organizations that I would like to work with as my community partner, but on

    the application form there is only room for one. Can I have two different community

    organizations participate in my WIF project?

    ; Can my community partner be a for-profit business/trade organization? ; Can a student representative from the local chapter of a national organization be my

    community partner representative?

Group projects

    ; How should group projects fill out the application form?

    ; How many students constitute a “group?”

    ; Do group projects receive the same amount of funding as individual projects? Constructing a WIF proposal

    ; Who decides which WIF proposals get funded?

    ; Five double-spaced pages is not much spacewhat are the things that are most important

    for me to stress in my proposal?

    ; The WIF proposal is fairly rigorousare there resources that I can use for assistance as I

    go through the proposal process?

    ; Does my transcript need to be an “official” transcript from the Registrar‟s Office (bearing

    the official UW seal)?

    ; Do I need to use citations and references in the 5-page project description included in my

    proposal?

    ; To whom should my letters of support be addressed?

    ; Can I attach an addendum further describing my community partner if space doesn‟t

    allow in the proposal?

    Budget

    ; For my WIF project, I plan on supplementing the financial award from the WIF with

    additional sources of funding. How do I account for this in my budget? Miscellaneous

    ; I plan on engaging in research on human subjects. Do I need special clearance to do this?

    ; Can I perform a WIF project in a country where I am studying abroad (and while I am

    studying abroad)?

    ; Can I re-apply for a WIF if I‟ve already received a WIF in a previous year?

    ; Can I re-apply for a WIF if I applied last year and my application was not funded?

    ; WIF projects are awarded 3 academic credits. What if I can‟t fit 3 credits into my course

    load for the upcoming semester?

Funding

    Q: Do individual projects and group projects get the same amount of funding? What about projects that last for a year versus one that lasts just a semesterare they funded the

    same through the WIF?

    A: Funding varies depending on number of students participating in the WIF project, and

    duration of the project.

Academic Year: $3,000

    Semester: $1,500

    Summer: $1,000

    Summer & Fall: $2,500

    Group Project: $5,000

    Group Summer-only Project: $2,500

    Additional funding is provided to cover WIF project development and implementation costs ($1,000 for summer-only and $2,000 for all other projects). These costs will be processed through the Morgridge Center‟s Administrative Assistant at the School of Human Ecology. See

    the following question for more information related to this.

    Q: How is the WIF award distributed to the student, the faculty/instructional staff mentor, and the community partner?

    A: Please note that the WIF funding distribution process has changed from previous years. ; All Wisconsin Idea Undergraduate Fellows, faculty/instructional staff mentors, and

    community partners will work directly with the Morgridge Center‟s Administrative Assistant

    within the School of Human Ecology, Jonie Bonfield (jbonfield@wisc.edu; 608-262-0017),

    to purchase and fund all related project needs, including supplies, printing, food,

    transportation costs, etc. Anything and everything needed to develop and implement your

    WIF project will go through Jonie. For example, once you know you need certain supplies,

    contact Jonie and request that she order those supplies for you. In some instances you may

    need to provide invoices to her for proper payment. Please remember to plan in advance

    and be timely with your requests. If some items have already been purchased, you must

    supply Jonie with the original receipts so that she can process a reimbursement for you

    through UW-Madison Business Services.

    ; The “project development and implementation expenses” (explained above) are separate

    from the stipend that Fellows receive. Fellows receive half of their stipend up front, and

    receive the second half of their stipend upon completion of the WIF project. ; Recommended steps around determining budgets and funding are as follows:

    1) Fellows should meet with their faculty/instructional staff mentor and community partner at

    the beginning of the project period to flesh out budgets and funding issues.

    2) For ease of communication, coordinate between all three parties, and determine who will

    act as a liaison with Jonie Bonfield (jbonfield@wisc.edu; 608-262-0017) around project-

    related funding needs.

    3) Have the designated liaison contact meet with and contact Jonie at the beginning of the

    project period to fill project funding needs.

    Q: I’m planning for a summer WIF project—do I have to pay tuition for enrolling in

    classes for the summer?

    A: Yes. Your WIF project will be treated as a 3-credit independent study, for which you will have to pay tuition. However, your stipend may be put toward this expense.

Q: Will a WIF award affect my financial aid?

    A: The WIF will not affect a student‟s financial aid package, however the award is not tax-

    exempt.

    Q: May I keep the stipend awarded to me through the WIF, or must it be applied to my project?

    A: The money awarded to the student through the WIF is an academic award, and thus the

    money is the recipients‟ to use as he/she sees fit. You may use your award to defray expenses of

    your project (students engaged in WIF projects that require travel often use some of their award for transportation expenses), but it is not necessary. Funding provided to the community partner and faculty/instructional staff mentor should be used to develop and implement the project. Q: May I apply for a WIF if I am concurrently receiving funding from a different campus-wide award (such as a fellowship or a scholarship)?

    A: It depends on the award. You may simultaneously receive a WIF and the following campus-

    wide awards: Bascom Hill Society Scholarship, Herfurth-Kubly Award, Hirsch Family Award, Meyerhoff Award, or University Bookstore Award. You may not simultaneously receive a WIF

    and the following awards: Hilldale Research Fellowship, Holstrom Scholarship, or Kaufmann Entrepreneurship Community Internship. Consult the Morgridge Center at 263-2432 if you are unclear on this, or click here for a listing of the aforementioned campus-wide awards.

    Q: How does a WIF differ from the Morgridge Center’s other financial awards, such as the Kauffman Entrepreneurship Community Internship?

    A: The WIF award requires the recipient to have the committed support of a

    faculty/instructional staff member. Eligibility is open to sophomores through seniors. The Kaufmann award does not require the support of a faculty/instructional staff member. Eligibility is open to juniors through graduate students.

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Faculty/instructional staff mentors

    Q: How should I approach a faculty member/instructional staff member about being my mentor if I do not know them already?

    A: Bear in mind that faculty/instructional staff members are very busy, so contact them as early as possible in order to allow enough time to meet with them, discuss your project, etc.

    ; If you aren‟t personally acquainted with your prospective mentor, do some legwork prior

    to contacting them. Research what their areas of interest and scholarship are (hopefully

    these align with the interests of your project, which is why you are contacting them). If

    you can speak to how your WIF project aligns with their field of research, it greatly

    increases the chances of their supporting your project.

    ; If there are faculty/instructional staff members whom you know personally and think they

    might know your prospective mentor, ask them. Having a faculty/instructional staff

    acquaintance call or mention to your prospective mentor that you may be contacting them

    can alert them to the fact that you will be approaching them and perhaps increase the

    chances of them mentoring your WIF project.

    Q: I have two prospective faculty/instructional staff members, each from a different department, whom I would like to have as my mentor. Can I have two different faculty/instructional staff mentors?

    A: While you may consult with more than one faculty/instructional staff mentor in preparation for and during your WIF project, only one may actually serve as your „official‟ mentor formally recognized on the application form. This is because only one faculty/instructional staff member may award your grade. If you wish to work with more than one mentor, you may do so, but you

    may only recognize one as your ‘official’ faculty/instructional staff mentor on your application

    form.

    Q: Two weeks ago, I contacted a faculty/instructional staff member about being my mentor and I still have not heard back from them. What should I do?

    A: Pay them a follow-up email or phone call, concisely restating what you had said when you contacted them previously. Bear in mind that they are likely very busy, and you should make clear that you are willing meet them when and where it works for their schedule. Q: Can my TA be my faculty/instructional staff mentor?

    A: Graduate students and/or TA‟s cannot be WIF mentors. Mentors must be either faculty or

    instructional academic staff.

    Q: I have contacted a faculty/instructional staff member who has agreed to be my mentor, but they are going on leavecan I still work with them?

    A: Yes, as long as they have assured you that they will have ample time in their schedule and sufficient contact with you to play an active role in your project, and will be able to award a „grade‟ for your project while they are away.

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Community partners

    Q: I have an idea, but I don’t have a community partner organization selected yet. What

    are good ways to go about locating one?

    A: A good starting point is www.volunteeryourtime.org, a search engine that connects you with

    local organizations in your area of interest; also consult with your faculty mentor about groups they may have worked with in the past; additionally, the Morgridge Center library (154 Red Gym) has a blue binder entitled “WI Idea Undergraduate Fellowship Program Project Ideas,” where interested community organizations have submitted projects they have a need for that could be fulfilled through a WIF project.

    Another resource for finding potential community partners is http://www.communityshares.com/,

    the website for Community Shares of Wisconsin.

    Q: I have two organizations that I would like to work with as my community partner, but on the application form there is only room for one. Can I have two different community organizations participate in my WIF project?

    A: Only one community organization may actually serve as your „official‟ partner, recognized on the application form.

    Q: Can my community partner be a for-profit business/trade organization?

    A: Yesas long as some aspect of the business/trade organization is dedicated to working on issues that the WIF supports. For example, hunger, poverty alleviation, community development, criminal justice, educational or environmental issues, the arts, community development, etc. Consult the Morgridge Center at 263-2432 if you are unclear on this. Q: Can a student representative from the local chapter of a national organization be my community partner representative?

    A: Nostudents cannot serve as community partner representatives. Contact the national organization to find a contact for the community organization, or find a local staff person (not a student).

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Group projects

    Q: How should group projects fill out the application form?

    A: One student should be the „lead,‟ and should fill out the application form and get it signed by the community partners and faculty member. The other students do not need to obtain these signatures. They should fill out an application form, but leave the community partner and faculty mentor field blank. Simply attach the additional group members‟ applications behind the lead student‟s when turning in the entire proposal.

    Q: How many students constitute a “group?”

    A: At least two, and no more than five.

    Q: Do group projects receive the same amount of funding as individual projects?

    A: No. See “Funding” for the answer to this.

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Constructing a WIF proposal

    Q: Who decides which WIF proposals get funded?

    A: An interdisciplinary selection committee comprised of five members (one UW student, one UW faculty, one community organization representative, one UW academic staff member, and one Morgridge Center for Public Service staff person) will choose WIF award recipients. Keep this widely-varying audience in mind when writing your proposal (keep discipline-specific

terminology to a minimum; don‟t assume your audience has prior knowledge of your subject

    matter).

    Q: Five double-spaced pages is not much spacewhat are the things that are most

    important for me to stress in my proposal?

    A: Primarily, the proposal needs to stress how your project, ideally in some innovative way, will meet the needs of the community partner and how it will meet your own needs as a student. Your proposed project must be realistic, and your budget must be sound. Above all,

    your project must be feasible and able to be completed in the specified project duration.

    Q: The WIF proposal is fairly rigorousare there resources that I can use for assistance

    as I go through the proposal process?

    A: Yes. First, consult the numerous resources on the Wisconsin Idea Undergraduate Fellowship website at http://morgridge.wisc.edu/students/wif.html. Additionally, the Writing Center

    (http://www.wisc.edu/writing/) has familiarity with the WIF proposal process and can provide valuable feedback regarding WIF proposals.

    Q: Does my transcript need to be an “official” transcript from the Registrar’s Office (bearing the official UW seal)?

    A: No. Unofficial transcripts or “student records” may be obtained via your MyUW webpage, and are acceptable for the application. They may be obtained via

    http://ordertranscript.wisc.edu. Photocopies of official seal-bearing transcripts are also acceptable.

    Q: Do I need to use citations and references in the 5-page project description included in my proposal?

    A: Yes, if you are using specific sources to put your application together. Q: To whom should my letters of support be addressed?

    A: The WIF Selection Committee, using the Morgridge Center address/email/fax number: 716 Langdon Street

    Room 154

    Madison, WI 53706

    wif@morgridge.wisc.edu

    fax: 608-262-0542

    Q: Can I attach an addendum further describing my community partner if space doesn’t allow in the proposal?

    A: No. If the selection committee needs more information from you, they will seek it out independently or ask you to provide more. Your community partner may include additional information about itself in the letter of support it submits.

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Budget

    Q: For my WIF project, I plan on supplementing the financial award from the WIF with additional sources of funding. How do I account for this in my budget?

    A: Clearly indicate how all project costs will be met. If project costs exceed the allotted WIF “project development and implementation” funding, you must indicate additional sources of

    funding on your budget. If this additional funding includes using your own stipend to cover project costs, indicate this on your budget. If the additional funding is coming from an outside source, provide verification of the funds through a letter. Click here for an example of a well-

    designed WIF budget.

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Miscellaneous

    Q: I plan on engaging in research on human subjects. Do I need special clearance to do this?

    A: YES! Any student engaged in any sort of research project involving human subjects must

    obtain the approval of a campus Institutional Review Board (IRB) prior to beginning research. It is mandatory that IRB guidelines are followed! Consult

    http://info.gradsch.wisc.edu/research/hrpp/index.html for further information.

    Q: WIF projects are awarded 3 academic credits. What if I can’t fit 3 credits into my

    course load for the upcoming semester?

    A: For a project that extends longer than one semester (for instance, summer and fall or a full academic year), you may split credits only for the semesters during which you are engaged in

    your WIF project. For instance, if the project is a summer and fall project, you may take 2 credits in the summer and one in the fall, or vice-versa. Work with your faculty/instructional staff mentor as well as your academic advisor to make this decision.

    Q: Can I re-apply for a WIF if I applied last year and my application was not funded?

    A: Yesas long as you are still enrolled in classes as an undergraduate (and will be for the duration of the WIF period for which you are applying), you may re-apply for a WIF. Q: Can I re-apply for a WIF if I’ve already received a WIF in a previous year?

    A: Noa student may only be granted a WIF once in his/her undergraduate career. This includes prior WIF recipients who are reapplying for a WIF as part of a group project. Re-applications of any sortindividual or group projectswill not be considered if a student has

    previously been awarded a WIF.

    Q: Can I perform a WIF project in a country where I am studying abroad (and while I am studying abroad?)

    A: Yes.

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