Request for Proposal

Request for Proposals (RFP)


This RFP solicits applications for projects designed to increase student success at IU South Bend. Projects are expected to last at least two years, and may be continued a third year if shown to be effective. Projects must be renewed each year. Grants may range up to $5,000/year, depending on the projected impact on student success. (If you have a project that does not require grant support, please contact us to discuss whether we can provide any other resources to assist you.)


All faculty, staff, and students are eligible to be members of teams. Teams may also include community partners. All teams must include at least one fulltime IU South Bend faculty member who will serve as the team leader and liaison with Vision 2020.

Specific Requirements

Projects must focus on improving student success, primarily defined as improved retention, persistence and timely graduation. Informed by the scholarly literature, projects may target behaviors that are linked to student success, such as engagement, critical thinking, study skills, or mentoring. Projects must include methods of assessing whether goals were met.

Criteria for Selection

The primary criteria for funding will be based on how much it will cost to improve success for how many students. The successful proposal must address the impact of the project upon student success. In the first year, funding will depend on predicted impact on student success as defined by relationships to retention, persistence, and/or timely
graduation. In the second year, funding will depend on assessment data. If assessment results indicate weak impact, teams are encouraged to use their data to revise their project for the following year. See the rubric on the Vision 2020 website for other considerations, including the size and diversity of the team.

Content and Form of Proposal

Proposals should be in a single PDF emailed to the Vision 2020 Committee at The file should be named with the project title (may be shortened) and last name of the team leader.

Propsoal Format

Proposals for Academic Year 1 (AY1) must follow this format:

  • Project Title
  • Team | Name, unit affiliation, position, and contact information of all team members, indicating team leader as the contact person (See Areas E and F of the Grant Rubric below.) Must include one faculty and one staff member.
  • Abstract | 150 words or less
  • Narrative | (less than 2000 words) including:
  • What are your goals?
    What impact do you expect on student success as defined by relationships to retention, persistence, and/or timely graduation? Based on current research literature, give an estimate of the impact. (e.g. reduce the number of late enrollments in W131 by 10%)
  • How will you assess whether you reach your goals?
    Description of methods for assessing the impact of the project on students. Multiple methods, including both quantitative and qualitative, are encouraged.
  • What will you do to reach those goals?
    Detailed description of the project activities. Citations to relevant literature are expected. (See the Vision 2020 Resources webpage for ideas.) To whom? Estimate of how many students will be affected each year, and a description of those students (e.g. class, major, GPA, gender). If fully implemented, how many students could participate each year? (e.g. all 800 female freshmen students)
  • Budget for AY1 and AY2. Please see the Vision 2020 Resources webpage for budget guidelines. You may also contact Erika Zynda in the Office of Research for assistance.
  • Address the project’s fiscal sustainability, including any current and future funding sources
  • Timeline for AY1 and AY2 of project
  • Routing sheet for acknowledgement by administrators (director, dean, chair) of units that will be affected by the project: