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Innovation Lab

Student Micro Grant Program


The Spelman Innovation Lab (IL) is a student-centric space for cultivating creativity, tinkering, experimenting, designing and prototyping new ideas and concepts.  The Lab serves students pursuing academic projects, research projects, personal projects, entrepreneurial ventures or personal curiosities.


1  Purpose

A student “Micro Grant” is an allotment of funds set aside to support a specific student project.  While the Innovation Lab is well-supplied with materials and well-equipped with tools for rapid prototyping and making, many student projects require specific materials and equipment not currently in the Lab’s holdings.  The Micro Grant program addresses this need by providing up to $1000 for materials and supplies to support a specific student project.



2  Description

Applicants must provide a brief description of the project and an explanation of how the funds will be spent.  Submit your application as an individual or student team through the application portal.  All students are eligible.  Awarded Micro Grants are subject to the following conditions and restrictions:

  • Micro Grants are managed by the IL on behalf of the student or student team.  The lab will expend the funds on behalf of the awardee.

  • Micro grants can be cancelled if sufficient progress on the target project is not made.

  • Micro grants expire after 1 year.  Justifiable extensions will be considered.

  • Unconsumed Micro Grant purchases remain the property of the IL.

  • Students should not depend on Micro Grants for class assignments as the requisition and shipping times are unpredictable (We will not pay for expedited shipping).



3  Eligibility

All students may apply.  You may apply as an individual or as a student team.  Student teams may contain members from other AUC schools, but must be at least 50% Spelman students.  Only a Spelman student may submit the application.



4  Application Process

Applications will be accepted on a rolling schedule until funds are exhausted.  Submit your application through the application portal.  You are encouraged to stop by IL and discuss your project idea with the lab directors (Jerry Volcy,, Jaycee Holmes,, Eric Thompson, prior to submitting your application.  We can help you properly scope your project, discuss capabilities of the lab and offer suggestions and recommendations to help strengthen your application.

Once your application is submitted, please allow up to two weeks for the review process.  You will be notified if your application has been awarded.



5  Requirements

If awarded, the awardee agrees to photographically document the progress of the project and to allow the lab to use that documentation for promotional purposes.

At the end of the grant period, the awardee is required to create a 5-minute video describing the project.  This video may be used on the IL website and for other promotional purposes.


6  Review Criteria

Your application will be reviewed by the IL Team.  The ideal project will contain non-trivial elements of design, prototyping, construction, experimentation or entrepreneurship.  We will not fund projects that are largely manufacturing in nature.  

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