Support for Graduate Students (SGS)


The purpose of the Support for Graduate Students (SGS) program is to provide funds to graduate students (Master’s or Doctoral) to support the research or creative scholarly activities required by their degree programs. Funded projects may include scientific, interpretive, creative, historical, quantitative or qualitative scholarship. The SGS grants, administered through the students’ academic departments, will be awarded on a competitive basis. Priority will be given to students who are not currently supported through a research assistantship or graduate fellowship.


Faculty who are both (1) NAU regular employees (i.e., benefit eligible) and (2) eligible to serve as Principal Investigators/Project Directors on extramural grants may choose one eligible graduate student to sponsor for the SGS program (one student per faculty member). The faculty member and student collaborate to complete the application. 

In order to be eligible for support through the SGS program, graduate student applicant must be:

  • in good standing (at the time of application and the time of award)
  • making good progress toward degree completion in a graduate degree program that requires individualized research/scholarship. The requirement for research/scholarship will be stated in the NAU Academic Catalog.

Award Information 

Each award may be up to $1,500. All funds must be used to support the graduate student’s research project and may only be used for activities that occur during the award period. 

Award Period 

The award period for 2017 will be January 16 through August 25, 2017. 

Examples of allowable* uses of SGS funds include:

  • Compensation for student assistants (hired as Student Workers) paid hourly wages
  • Travel costs associated with fieldwork
  • Costs associated with collecting or analyzing data, including outside consultants
  • Purchase of specific project supplies
  • Other activities that directly support the student’s research project

*All expenditures must be in accordance with NAU financial and purchasing policies and guidelines.

Examples of what funds may not be used for:

  • Salary or other compensation for the graduate student applicant
  • Tuition, fees or health insurance
  • Reimbursement of costs incurred outside of the award period (e.g., student may not use the SGS funds to reimburse him-/herself for supplies purchased before the start date of the SGS grant)
  • Laptops or computing equipment
  • Travel for the applicant to attend conferences
  • Costs associated with the faculty sponsor's research, including (but not limited to) travel

Mechanism of Award 

Purchases of goods and services (including payroll expenses) in support of SGS projects will be made through the awardee’s department business office. The department business officer will subsequently submit a transfer request to the SGS Program Coordinator, who will arrange to reimburse the department for the SGS expense. 

Regulatory Assurances and Compliance Requirements 

Projects involving the use of human subjects, vertebrate animals, biohazardous materials/recombinant DNA, or radioactive materials/Xrays must be reviewed by the appropriate review committee or board to ensure compliance with federal regulations and with guidelines established in the NAU Faculty Handbook. Projects involving the use of export controlled material/technology, hazardous chemicals or field work may also require training and/or review. For forms or more information see: Environmental Health and Safety Forms. If you need assistance with any assurance and compliance issues, contact the Office of the Vice President for Research at

As the purpose of the SGS program is to provide funds to support ongoing graduate work required by degree programs, it is assumed that all regulatory assurance and compliance requirement approvals will have already been secured for most applicants.  Documentation of review and approval from IRB (Institutional Review Board), IACUC (Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee), Radiation Safety Committee, or the IBC (Institutional Biosafety Committee) must be submitted as part of the application materials by the application deadline of December 12, 2016. Documentation of required field safety training, export review, or chemical hygiene plan update/training must also be submitted by the application deadline of December 12, 2016. 

When to Apply

Application Deadline

5 p.m. Monday, December 12, 2016

Award Decisions e-mailed to applicants

Friday, January 6, 2017

Award Start Date/Activation

Monday, January 16, 2017

Award End Date

Friday, August 25, 2017

How to Apply 

PAGE FORMATTING: All pages must be formatted as follows:

  • 1-inch margins on all sides
  • Single spacing or greater (e.g., 1.5 is acceptable but less than single spacing is not)
  • 12-point font (Times New Roman highly recommended) 

1. Face Page Template (includes Abstract) 

2. Project Narrative (1-3 pages): 

  • Description of Research:  State the student’s research topic/question(s) being investigated; demonstrate the relevance of this work to the discipline; describe how the project is innovative; briefly outline the study methodology.
  • Progress to Date:  Describe the work that the student has done thus far.
  • Planned Work/Methods:  What specific activities will be conducted during the award period?  How will these activities move the project forward?
  • Use of funds:  A formal budget is not needed. However, applicants should describe, in general terms, how the funds will be used.
  • Bibliography/References, if applicable (not included in page limit)

3. Faculty Sponsor Recommendation Template (1 page limit): 

4. Other Support Template (no page limit)

This template is used to provide a combined listing of all extramural and intramural support (grants, fellowships, assistantships, etc.) awarded directly to the student applicant, and all extramural and intramural support awarded directly to the student’s faculty sponsor.

Student applicants should seek input from the faculty sponsor when completing faculty support information section. 

Submitting the SGS Application

Applications for SGS funding must be submitted electronically. The Face Page, Narrative, Faculty Sponsor Recommendation, and Other Support should be combined into one PDF document and emailed to

The PDF document must be named as follows:

SGSYEAR_Last name of student applicant_First name of student applicant, i.e., SGS2017_Smith_John

The Subject of the e-mail must read as follows: SGSYEAR Last name of student applicant, First name of student applicant, i.e., SGS2017 Smith, John

Applications are due at 5 p.m. Monday, December 12, 2016. 

NOTE:  The application should be submitted by the graduate student; the faculty sponsor must be copied on the e-mail message in which the application is transmitted. 

LATE APPLICATIONS WILL NOT BE REVIEWED. The time stamp on the email received by OVPR is the date and time the application is recorded as being received. Please confirm that your e-mail has been transmitted before shutting down your computer.  We have many more applications than we can fund; therefore, the first review decision is to discard late applications. 

Questions?  Contact Christine Smith at or 523-8594.