Early Research Initiative (ERI)

Catalyst Grants

Deadline for Applications: 16 February 2021 by 3:00 PM

ERI Catalyst Award Cover Sheet 2021

ERI Catalyst Grants Spring 2021

In response to the unprecedented disruptions to academic work that have been one byproduct of the current global pandemic, The Provost’s Office is pleased to announce the Catalyst Grant program to provide short term support for doctoral student research during this academic year.

Possible uses for these grants include: the hiring of proxy researchers (for archival, ethnographic work, data collection, lab work), access to databases or materials currently unavailable to GC students, the purchase of software or laboratory supplies/reagents, language (or other specialized) training in preparation of future field/archival work, travel to approved locations, virtual attendance of performances, and/or the redesign of dissertation chapters/projects in light of current conditions.

Awards of $2,000.00 will be made in each of the following categories:


A)      Level III students: to support research aimed at the completion of a chapter or substantive portion of the dissertation.


B)       Level II students: whose research agenda may need to be redesigned because of ongoing disruptions prior to the submission of their dissertation prospectus.



  • Students who received research awards from the Provost’s Office in the past still are eligible to apply for this new grant.
  • Students who received an ERI Catalyst Grant in the Fall 2020 semester are not eligible for additional funding at this time.  
  • These awards are intended to cover direct research expenses. Students who are in need of others types of assistance should apply for a student emergency grant: https://www.gc.cuny.edu/Prospective-Current-Students/Financing-Your-Education/Financial-Resources



Each application must include the following:


1)  Cover Sheet (attached)

2)  A brief and specific description of how this grant will help you advance or retool your research agenda or dissertation project (no more than 500 words)

3)  Two-page curriculum vitae

4)  Current Graduate Center transcript.  (Students may submit the unofficial student copy that can be printed from banner.)

5)  One letter of reference to be submitted electronically by your adviser (see instructions below).


Recipients of these fellowships must agree to the following conditions as part of their acceptance of the award:


1)  Write a one page summary of your progress (due by 1 May 2021).

2)  Agree to potentially have some version of their work featured on the GC website.


Instructions for submitting your application:


1)  Combine your cover sheet, research description, curriculum vitae, and transcript into a single file (either as a pdf document or a word document).


  • Use the following format when naming your document: Last Name, First Name, Program

2)      Email your file directly to fellowshipapps@gc.cuny.edu


  • Please use your graduate center email address when sending the file.


Instructions for Faculty Recommenders


1)      Prepare your reference letter as a regular word or pdf document.


Please directly address how these funds will enable the student to move forward with their research at this time. If the student is proposing to redesign their dissertation proposal/project please assess how this redesign will effectively lead to success (advancement or graduation).


  • Please use the following format when naming your document:

Student Last Name, First Name


3)      Email your file directly to fellowshipapps@gc.cuny.edu


If you have questions, contact Rachel Sponzo at rsponzo@gc.cuny.edu.