Opportunities for extracurricular arts projects on campus
Student Arts Grants enhance the rich and varied cultural landscape throughout campus by supporting the creation and presentation of arts projects by current Stanford students. These grants provide financial support for producing on-campus performances and exhibitions featuring Stanford students.
All individual students and student organizations are eligible to apply!
These grants are administered by the Office of the Vice President for the Arts. Spark! Grants are made possible by a generous gift from Leslie and George Hume. Creative Spaces Grants are made possible by support from The Stanford Fund.
Who can apply?
What types of projects are eligible?
Types of Grants
|Spark! Grants||For performing arts and film projects (Up to $1,500 per project)|
|Maker Grants||For visual art, fashion, and sound recording projects
(Up to $1,500 per project)
|Creative Spaces Grants||For on-campus venue and technical support
($100-$9,000 per project)
|Fall 2017||Sept 25, 2017 @ 11:59pm
(performing arts/film projects only)
|Week 2 (Fall Qtr)|
|Winter or Spring 2018||Oct 22, 2017 @ 11:59pm||mid-Nov 2017|
|Spring or Fall 2018||Winter Quarter, Week 4||mid-Mar 2018|
|Fall 2018 or Winter 2019||Spring Quarter, Week 4||early May 2018|
How to Apply
Plan Your Project
Complete Your Application
All of the Student Arts Grant opportunities use a single application.
Each application must include:
Priority will be given to the following types of projects:
- Can be exhibited in Roble Arts Gym
- Partner* with one of the following organizations:
- Partner* with a campus community center (DGen, Haas, A3C, BCSC, El Centro, Qspot, The Markaz, NACC, WCC)
* Make sure to discuss your project with your intended campus partner prior to submitting your application!
The Essential FAQ's
- Focus on the key elements of your project (who, what, where, when, why, how).
- The project's scope and needs (what are you planning on doing & what do you need to make it happen)
- The artistic goals of the project (such as themes, concepts, challenges, connection(s) to the campus community, etc.)
- The skills each member of your team will bring to the project
- The plan for performing/presenting the project on campus, including the number of Stanford students involved and in what capacities
- How the grant-funded items will be used in the project
- Proposals should be 500-750 words long. You do not need to include references or citations.
- If your proposal is for an annual event, include detail about what your group learned from producing the event in the past and what you want to accomplish for this current iteration.
- Please provide a budget for your entire project--not just the portion relating to your grant request. We want to see how the grant will fit in with your overall project plan.
- Think about all of the materials it will take to realize your project. Do some internet research to estimate costs.
- You can group items into categories (e.g. hardware instead of nails, screws, bolts, washers; paint instead of listing individual colors; sewing notions instead of thread, buttons, needles, etc.)
- Include any free/low cost campus resources (such as the Equipment Lending Library, Lathrop Media Lab, etc.)
- Don't leave the "Grant Request" column blank.
- Check your math! If your project costs are greater than your project funding in Part 4, consider cutting costs or applying for additional funds.
- We encourage all grantees to explore utilizing multiple funding sources whenever possible to realize their projects.
- If you are planning to apply (or have confirmed) funding from other sources (such as ASSU, TSF, community centers, departments, etc.), please include that information in the budget template.
- Visit our Grants & Awards page for additional campus resources for funding creative projects.
- Budgets must be uploaded as a single page PDF using the Student Arts Grant budget template. (Remember to check the formatting of your PDF before uploading!)
- A list of items that can and cannot be funded is located in the "Grant Funds" section of this FAQ.
Contact Sabrina Wilensky if you have any questions regarding your project budget.
Select at least one (but no more than three) work samples that reflect both your accomplishments as an artist as well as the type of project you are proposing. Include original works by you and/or members of your project team that have been completed during your time at Stanford.
Possible work samples could include:
- Concept sketchess for this project (3-5, as a single PDF)
- Photos of completed works (3-5, as a single PDF)
- Sketchbook samples (3-5, as a single PDF)
- Audio/video recordings (no longer than 5 minutes)
- Director's/choreographer's notes or storyboards for the project (5-10 pages, as a single PDF)
The following items could also be included but must be accompanied by at least one other item from the prior list:
- Mood boards
- Academic research papers
- Preliminary dramaturgical work/research papers
- Photos or video from rehearsals
Please do not include the following items in your work samples:
- Press clippings from prior works by the student organization or creative team
- Publicity materials from prior works
- Headshots, resumes/CVs, general web-based portfolios, etc.
Unfortunately, no. However, there are several other grant programs on campus that have been used to fund travel and living costs for creative projects. Visit our Grants & Awards page to learn more.
Student Arts Grant funds are only issued as reimbursements or through direct purchases through the Office of the Vice President for the Arts (such as for campus services or online order.)
Grant recipients will be expected to participate in an orientation meeting, check-in periodically (via email or in person), document their creative process, present the completed project on the main Stanford campus, and submit a final report reflecting on their project experience.
Grant recipients will present their project on the main Stanford campus within two quarters of receiving their award.
All projects must adhere to University policies, including the Fundamental Standard and Honor Code.
Student Arts Grants can fund the following types of project expenses:
- Lighting equipment rental*
- On-campus venue costs (ELS, BGM, campus professional services, renting chairs/tables, renting a portable stage, etc.)
- Art materials (e.g. pencils, paints, ink, clay, paper, canvas, etc.)
- Sound equipment rental*
- Set and sculpture construction materials
- Costumes and stage make up
- Audio recording equipment rental*
- Publicity materials
- Licenses and royalties
- Camera rental (film or photography)*
- Specialty musical instrument rental
- Film processing and photography supplies
- Framing and art hanging/display supplies
- Fabric and sewing notions
- Small electronics and components (e.g. LEDs, wires, switches, circuits)
The following items covered by Student Arts Grant funds:
- Expenses incurred prior to the grant award date
- Housing/lodging or other off-campus venue costs
- Transportation and travel (including local and on-campus transportation)
- Stipends, honoraria, or thank you gifts
- Hiring performers, photographers/videographers, musicians, or other specialists
- Tuition or class costs (both Stanford and non-Stanford)
- Food, meals, or event reception costs
- Materials, goods, or services purchased outside of the United States
- Campus lab fees (e.g. PRL, AAH Photo Lab, etc.)
- Software (See the list of available applications in the Lathrop Media Lab)
- Library fines or fees (including Lathrop Tech Desk extended rentals)
- Printing on campus printers
- Purchasing equipment solely for personal use (including, but not limited to, cameras, audio, lighting, projection, etc.)
* Projects should utilize the Equipment Lending Library whenever possible. Occasionally Student Arts Grant funds can be used to purchase equipment that is in high demand. However, any equipment purchased with Student Arts Grant funds will become property of the Office of Student Productions (OSP); students must return equipment to the OSP upon the completion of their project so that it can be made available for student use through the Equipment Lending Library.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Graduate students (masters or doctoral): Yes—as long as the core project team is mostly comprised of undergraduate or co-term students.
Non-Stanford students (including alumni): Yes, to a limited extent. All projects must feature current Stanford students as the lead artists and core members of the project team. Stanford students must comprise the majority of the performers and technicians working on the project. (Grant funds cannot be used to pay outside performers or specialists.) Stanford alumni are welcome to participate in grant-funded projects as long as the majority of the project team are current undergraduate and co-term students.
Absolutely! The main exhibition/performance, though, should take place at some point during the regular academic year (Fall, Winter, or Spring quarter).
All grant applications are reviewed by a committee comprising of staff and student interns from the Office of the Vice President for the Arts. The committee evaluates each application based on the clarity of the project proposal, contribution to the campus community, use of campus resources, budget planning, and ability for the project to succeed. After the committee completes their evaluations, the scores and comments are totaled. The final funding decision is approved by the Projects and Grants Manager and the Associate Vice President for the Arts.
It depends. Grants are awarded in three cycles:
- Fall: for Winter and Spring projects
- Winter: for Spring and Fall projects
- Spring: for Fall and Winter projects
Grant funds are budgeted evenly throughout each year throughout the three application cycles so that each application cycle has access to the same amount of total funding. The number of awards given out each cycle varies based on the number of applications received as well as the strength of the projects.
Each project can only receive one Student Arts Grant during the academic year. However, individuals and student organizations are invited to apply each quarter for different projects.
Student Arts Grants are intended for extracurricular projects that are being led by student groups or individuals outside of their academic requirements.
Examples of ineligible projects include:
- Senior departmental capstones
- This includes individual capstone projects that have partnered with a student group for production support
- Honors research/thesis
- Master's research/thesis
- Senior synthesis projects for which you are receiving academic credit
- Projects relating to coursework (e.g. final projects for a seminar, workshop, or independent study)
There are a number of campus funding sources that can help support academic projects, including:
No. Each project is responsible for arranging and booking their own venues (including storage space) directly with the space manager. Reservation policies and access vary greatly amongst venues on-campus. The Arts Spaces Database lists reservation procedures for a number of traditional and non-traditional venues. If you are having trouble identifying or booking space, contact the Office of Student Productions.
Student Arts Grants funds are only disbursed through the following methods:
- Reimbursement to Stanford students
- Direct Purchase (such as making an online purchase or placing an order through a company)
- Direct Payment to On-Campus Services (such as Event & Labor Services, Custodial Services, On-Campus Venues, etc.)
If you need help with your application proposal you are strongly to attend drop-in office hours or schedule a meeting with Sabrina Wilensky. (Check the ArtsUpdate and this page for the quarterly office hour schedule.)
The Office of Student Productions (OSP) supports extracurricular student projects across the arts. OSP can assist with production advising, equipment, and location reservations. Contact Claudia Dorn for more information.
OSP has partnered with ASSU to set up the Equipment Lending Library. The Lending Library's collection includes speakers and stands, microphones, mixers, amps and cables, as well as photo and video equipment. All students are eligible to borrow equipment for up to five days.