Faculty invited to apply for micro-grants to explore connections between sports, society

Faculty are invited to submit proposals for the Sports and Society Micro-Grant Program, which provides funding to support research and curricular enrichment on topics related to sports and society in areas such as race, law, gender, education, medicine, the media and more. The application window for micro-grants of up to $5,000 will run from Thursday, April 19, to Monday, May 21.

This program is part of a larger initiative designed to explore how sports impact society, and how society impacts sports, across a variety of disciplines. At a January event in Washington, D.C., celebrating the 50th anniversary of the integration of SEC basketball by Vanderbilt alumni Perry Wallace and Godfrey Dillard, Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos announced plans to design a new academic center focused on exploring the intersection of sports and society. Also part of this initiative, Vice Chancellor for Athletics David Williams is spearheading an effort to host symposia on campus to explore the pressing issues of our time through the lens of the world of sports.


“This seed-grant process will allow us to identify ideas of faculty interest and expertise as we begin to design a potential center,” said Susan R. Wente, provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs. “Just as it did a half-century ago, the sports arena continues to provide us a microcosm to study how issues facing society emerge and resolve. The intersection of sports and society will provide rich material for research and teaching and unearth new questions that strengthen our trans-institutional approach.”

The micro-grants may fund a number of uses, including guest course lecturers, research, new course materials, expansion of an academic archive, or travel to an archive. An ad-hoc committee, to be formed by mid-May, will review proposals in June. Awards will be announced in late June, with funds available July 1 for the 2018-19 academic year.

Submissions should be made through the InfoReady portal.