MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – The Fund for Innovation (FFI) application opened on September 7 for the 2018­-2019 academic year. The fall deadline to apply is October 4, 2018. The FFI has an expedited process for proposals that apply for less than $2,000 in funding. These proposals are accepted on a rolling basis during the academic year.

The FFI will host drop-in hours at the College and the Institute this fall for anyone who has questions about the FFI or would like to workshop their proposal. Drop-in hours will be hosted at the Institute on September 11, from 1-3 p.m. and on September 12, from 11 a.m. -1 p.m. in McGowan 210C. Drop-in hours will be hosted at the College on September 17 from 10 a.m.-noon and on Thursday, September 20 from noon-2 p.m. in Axinn 220.

During the spring 2018 funding cycle, the FFI’s Fund Advisory Board funded three projects. Dr. Noah Graham, professor of physics, earned funding for his project “Middlebury College/Hannaford Career Center Technical Internship Program.” Mikayla Hyman ‘20 and Heather “Mika” Morton ‘19 were awarded for their project “Acknowledging Biases: Implementing Feminist Science in Middlebury Classrooms.” And Evelyn Lueker, MA ‘18, earned funding for her proposal “Diversity Abroad Reporters: Connecting the Conference to the Community.”

This fall, Ioana Uricaru, Barksdale Jr. Assistant Professor of Film and Media Culture, and David Miranda Hardy, assistant professor of film and media culture, will be working on the second edition of the Middlebury Script Lab. The Script Lab’s first session took place in January 2018 at the Bread Loaf campus in conjunction with Uricaru’s course, Writing for the Screen II. The Fund Advisory Board looks forward to the return of Script Lab this winter after a highly successful first edition this year.

A number of FFI projects successfully wrapped this summer. Dr. Kerstin Wilsch and Emily Goldman of the School in Jordan created a five-week pilot of a summer language program pairing five intermediate and advanced Arabic students with underserved Arabic-speaking families in New Britain, Conn., in a program focused on Arabic language learning and intercultural competence development. Danilo Herrera ‘18 finished a 10-episode web series that promotes social and cultural acceptance. The series will premiere on the College campus this fall.

The Fund for Innovation was created in March 2015 to honor President Ron Liebowitz and his wife Jessica by fostering continuous innovation at Middlebury. In 2017, President Laurie Patton announced the fund will be used to support projects that will inspire educational innovation. To date, the Fund for Innovation has provided funding and support to 29 innovative projects across the College, the Institute, and the Schools.

For more information, please contact Erin Southworth, special projects assistant, at: Learn more about the Fund for Innovation.