Internal Funding

Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activities Program (RSCAP)

The goal of the RSCAP is to support faculty and graduate and undergraduate student engagement in research, scholarship, and creative activities, furthering the mission of the University.  All Unit 3 faculty may compete for funding, including Instructional Faculty, Librarians, Coaches, and Counselors. Funding may be awarded to support either a Mini-grant or Summer Fellowship as described below.

Funding for the RSCAP is allocated annually to each CSU campus by the State Legislature. The intent of the legislation is to assist faculty in their efforts to remain current in their disciplines, pursue new ways to enrich student learning, and contribute to knowledge that will strengthen California socially, culturally, and economically. The legislative guidelines also emphasize the importance of encouraging and supporting untenured faculty.

Additional funding for the RSCAP is provided by the Instructionally Related Activities Program (IRA) for RSCAP Student Assistant Supplements. These supplements, funded by student fees administered by the Fee Advisory Committee, are available specifically for involving paid Student Assistants in Mini-grant projects.

In an effort to build more suppirt and incentives for faculty RSCA, the Provost has allocated additional funding to the 2018-19 RSCAP award cycle.

The Faculty Subcommittee on Sponsored Programs (FSSP) evaluates Mini-grant and Summer Fellowship proposals and makes funding recommendations to the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs.


The purpose of this program is to assist faculty in their efforts to collect data needed for external proposals, to remain current in disciplines, pursue new ways to enrich undergraduate and graduate student learning, and contribute to knowledge that will strengthen Sonoma State University.  This program also emphasizes the importance of encouraging and supporting faculty seeking tenure or promotion.

Mini-grant funding may be requested for one or more of the following activities:

  • Basic or applied research (e.g., literature or archival search, data collection, data analysis), which could support the future preparation of an external grant proposal or final publication.
  • Acquisition of materials or supplies in support of creative projects (e.g., exhibit, artistic performance, development of new creative techniques).
  • Other scholarly activities in the applicant's field.
  • Undergraduate and graduate student salaries to work on your research; student travel to present the research.
  • Support travel and equipment expenses if they are integral to the proposed work and the primary purpose of the travel is to collect data or do scholarly research.

Mini-grant funding may not be requested for the following:

  • Fulfillment of the requirements for an advanced degree.
  • Activities designed mainly for department or school programs or facilities.
  • Curriculum development (except as part of a project involving research, scholarship or creative activity).
  • Faculty assigned time or faculty stipends.
  • Meeting refreshments/hospitality.
  • Attendance at workshops or seminars focusing on the development of grant-writing skills.
  • Faculty travel to present at or attend professional meetings.

Past Mini-grant Awardees

2016-17 Award Cycle:

  • Rhianna Casesa, Investigating Identities: The Use of Bilingual Graphic Novels in Promoting Positive Literacy Identity and Bicultural Identity Amongst Struggling Readers in a Dual-Immersion School
  • Michael Cohen, Testing of a Pilot-scale Microbial Fuel Cell for On-site Winery Wastewater Treatment
  • Farid Farahmand, Characterizing Design Constraints of Micro Autonomous Energy Harvesting Underground Wireless Sensor (MAUWS) Devices
  • Armand Gilinsky, Student Editors for Wine Business Case Research Journal
  • Michelle Goman, Oxygen Isotopic Analysis of Ostracod, Mollusk and Fish Teeth Remains from the Rio Verde Valley, Oaxaca: First Steps towards a Climate Record for the Past 3000 Years
  • Karin Jaffe, Enhancing the Welfare of Captive Chimpanzees with Multi-phase Enrichment
  • Monica Lares, Optimization and Publication of DMS Foot Printing Experiments of BAFF-R and its Aptamer

2017-18 Award Cycle:

  • Christine Cali, Global Dance Perspectives Germany/US
  • Ellen Carlton, SSU-South County Consortium Mindfulness Project
  • Kristen Daley, Original dance piece for 2018 Spring Dance Concert
  • Steven Farmer, Supramolecular Ordering Agents for the Formation of Ordered Nanotube Networks
  • Margaret Purser, Santa Rosa Neighborhood Heritage Mapping Project
  • Benjamin Smith, Collegiate E-Sports and the Institutional Order of Higher Education in the Bay Area
  • Michael Visser, Emotions and Risk Preference: A Replication Study
  • Thomas Whitley, Visual Modeling of the effects of Climate Change on Cultural Heritage – Pilot Study
  • McKenzie Zippay, Using an Energetics Framework to Forecast the Interactive Effects of Abiotic and Biotic Stressors on Intertidal Mussels

Summer Fellowships

The purpose of this program is to assist faculty with their efforts to disseminate scholarly activities through a variety of media and venues and/or to prepare and submit grant and other external funding requests.  Funds from this competition may be used to complete one of the following specific tasks:

  • Prepare a research, scholarly or creative activity for publication submission by Spring.
  • Prepare an external grant proposal for submission by Spring.
  • Prepare for a publically reviewed conference, exhibition, performance, or creative activity.        

Funding for this task covers the equivalent of a two-week work period, which should be completed during the summer.

Past Summer Fellowship Awardees

2016 Award Cycle:

  • Jeff Baldwin, Large Class Learner Centered Education in Sustainable Development
  • Nick Dowdall, Transformational Geometry Book Initiation
  • Ajay Gehlawat, The Metatext of Bajirao Mastani: Intolerence in the Time of Modi
  • Sean Place, The Energetic Cost of Acclimating to Changing Environments
  • Zachary Sharrett, Quantification & Analysis of Locally Grown Hops in Sonoma County
  • John Sullins, Morality of Military Robotics Manuscript
  • Thomas Targett, An ALMA 1.3mm of the Ultra Deep Field

2017 Award Cycle:

  • Christina Baker-Foley, The Art of Resistance: Black Women Filmmakers
  • Robert Chase, Anglo Pacific Horizons: Race, Modernity, and the Great White Fleet
  • Samuel Cohen, Heresy, Authority, and the Bishops of Rome in Late Antiquity
  • Gurman Gill, Deep Learning for Classifying Animals in the Wild
  • Brian Gillespie, Using and Interpreting Statistics in the Social, Behavioral, and Health Sciences
  • Lena McQuade, Healthcare for People Not for Profit: The Berkeley Free Clinic
  • Anastasia Tosouni, Do Gender Empowerment Claims Made by Youth Mentorship Program Offered to Detained Girls Meet the Empowerment Standards Set by the Feminist and Critical Consciousness Literatures
  • Emily Vieira Asencio, Identity Processes and Technology

How to Apply

Applicants must follow the guidelines in the Request for Proposals. Applicants are encouraged to consult with their FSSP School Representative and the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) concerning project eligibility, grant writing education resources, and proposal development.
FSSP School Representatives:

Nicole Ream, ORSP Project Administrator, is also available to assist applicants. She can be reached at or (707) 664-4423. Additionally, applicants may review copies of successful applications from previous years. Please contact ORSP to request.

Undergraduate Research & Creative Experiences (SOURCE)

SOURCE offers several different types of awards to support undergraduates working on research or creative projects. Faculty mentors apply for two of these award types (Koret Scholars, Faculty SOURCE awards, and Norwick awards)

Koret Scholars Awards

Koret Scholars Awards are made possible by a grant from the Koret Foundation. These awards are intended to support undergraduate research and creative projects across all academic disciplines at SSU. Each award will provide funding for one faculty mentor working with four undergraduate SSU students, though the students do not need to all work on the same study or project. Faculty mentors can work with these students as a small group working on one project, as individuals working on individual projects, or some combination of both.

Faculty SOURCE Awards

Faculty SOURCE awards are made possible as a result of contributions from private donors. These awards are intended to support undergraduate research and creative projects across all academic disciplines at SSU. Each award will provide funding for a faculty mentor working with either an individual or small group of undergraduate SSU students.

Norwick Awards

Steven Norwick Memorial awards are made possible by contributions from the Norwick family and other private donors. The Norwick Fund supports undergraduate research or creative inquiry projects that take place all or in part at SSU preserves. Awards provide funding for faculty to engage students in independent studies or in projects undertaken as part of course work. All majors and degrees are eligible. Faculty who receive other awards through SOURCE (i.e. Koret Scholars Awards or Faculty SOURCE Awards) remain eligible to receive a Norwick award.