Diversity and Community Engagement
The University of Mississippi

Achieving Equity Grant

Program Description 

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP) Division of Research Development (RD) with the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at the University of Mississippi is soliciting proposals for seed grants for work relating to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The Achieving Equity Grants Program was first introduced in 2019 and is jointly administered by the Office of the Provost, the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs (ORSP), and the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement. The principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to the University of Mississippi’s mission of transformative teaching, learning, research, and service. This seed grant program is intended to support innovative scholarly and creative efforts at UM that advance knowledge on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The most competitive proposals will position the project in the context of challenges common to the University of Mississippi, the state of Mississippi, and beyond. Ideally, the knowledge gained from these projects will explore and broaden our understanding on issues of equity/inequity in institutions, academia, and/or broader society within and across academic disciplines. In order to maximize the impact of this important work, consideration should be given to how this internally-funded seed project can lead to larger externally-funded initiatives. ORSP is committed to working with the investigators to seek the level of external funding required to expand these seed projects into highly impactful programs.

Responsive ideas from any discipline(s) will be considered. Projects with potential contributions to advancing the Institutional DEI Strategic Plan are highly encouraged.

While diversity, equity, and inclusion have been defined in different ways, we will adopt the University of Mississippi institutional definition for the purposes of this solicitation:

Diversity is an affirmation of the intersecting individual, social and organizational identities that make our community vibrant and transformational. We commit to openly increasing, embracing and recognizing the full spectrum of diversity at all levels of our institution.

Equity is directly addressing the social, institutional, organizational and systemic barriers that prevent members of marginalized groups from thriving in our community. We commit to be both proactive and responsive in mitigating barriers so that all members of our institution are able to reach their full potential.

Inclusion is actively and intentionally creating a welcoming campus where all individuals feel they have a supportive and affirming space to learn, grow and engage. We commit to fostering a campus environment that fully supports, values and engages the intersectional identities of every member of our community.

Please see the full text of this solicitation for further information: 2024 Full Text Solicitation

Funding Stipulations 

The Provost’s Office has allocated $75,000 for this year’s competition. Funds will be distributed through internal Investment Grants managed by the ORSP Division of Research Development. No transmittal will be required, nor will facilities and administrative (indirect or overhead) costs apply—all allocated funds are to be used on direct project costs only.  

A typical or suggested project period is one (1) year, with a budget between $2,500 and $10,000 of direct costs – no F&A/indirect/overhead costs should be included in the budget. Within this suggested range, each investigator/team should ask for as much as (and no more than) they need (and can clearly justify) to complete a research project that will lay the groundwork for a larger, possibly externally-sponsored, follow-on project.

Projects outside of this suggested budget range may be considered, but will be more heavily scrutinized, relative to their demonstrated potential for leveraging large external funding mechanisms, achieving extraordinary impacts, and/or addressing a high-profile DEI issue of clear and present concern.

Funds can be requested for all of the usual grant categories; however, due to the limited funds available, requests for salaries/wages of faculty/staff-level investigators are neither expected nor encouraged; where included, such requests should be strongly justified in terms of their necessity for completing the project outside of the employee’s regular appointment. We welcome proposed preliminary projects that can be completed entirely within the research portion of investigator/team members’ regular 9-month or 12-month appointments.


Late January:  Call for Proposals Announced

Early February:  Zoom Information Session [optional]

Early March:  Non-binding Letters of Intent due via InfoReady Review Portal [required]

Early April: Application due via InfoReady Review Portal [required]

May: Award Decisions Announced

June: Grant Accounts Created & Funded for 1st Wave Projects certified as ready by May 15th

September: Grant Accounts Created & Funded for 2nd Wave Projects certified as ready by August 15th

September: Grant Accounts Created & Funded for 2nd Wave Projects certified as ready by January 15th


Progress Reports

Project PI is required to submit semiannual project reports until the project is complete, at which time a final report is due. Please click here to use this Qualtrics form to submit each report.

Point of Contact 

Direct questions on proposal preparation, competition/review process, or resources to support proposal development at DiversityEducation@olemiss.edu

Jazmine D. Kelley

Diversity Education and Strategic Initiatives Director

Division of Diversity and Community Engagement

Jason Hale

Director of Research Development

Office of Research and Sponsored Programs

Mary Lea McMillan

Program Manager of Research Development

Office of Research and Sponsored Programs

Past Awards  

2023 Achieving Equity Grant Recipients

2022 Achieving Equity Grant Recipients

2021 Achieving Equity Grant Recipients

2020 Achieving Equity Grant Recipients

Information Session Zoom

Click here for the Achieving Equity Grant Program Information Session Zoom.