Funding Requests

Through BTU, faculty, staff, and students have access to funding resources aimed to align, scale, sustain, and institutionalize community engagement partnerships and efforts.

BTU resources are intended to support partnership and community engagement work of faculty, staff, and students. There are many different forms of community engagement and partnership work within higher education. At Towson University, this work is seen as “a dynamic relational process that facilitates communication, interaction, involvement, and exchange between an organization and a community for a range of social and organizational outcomes” (Johnston 2018). Individuals seeking BTU support should craft requests with these parameters of community engagement and partnership work in mind.

BTU Investment Applications - Now Being Accepted

BTU Priority Investments

Priority Investment funding is allocated as investments over a one to three year period, focused on scaling, sustaining, aligning, and institutionalizing leading TU community engagement partnerships and projects. Consideration is given to projects that are interdisciplinary, integrate student learning and high-impact practices, already involve external funding sources, and have scholarly dissemination potential or an existing track-record. Previous investments have ranged from $15,000 to $25,000.

  • Must have clearly identified existing and potential additional external partners
  • Must include a letter of recommendation from the associated partner organization(s) and from at least one dean or vice president
  • Must demonstrate how the investment will result in growth and sustainability
  • Applicants should have a willingness to explore new and potential cross-campus collaborations
  • Assessment and evaluation approach must be clearly identified
  • If requested, year two and year three support will be contingent on progress and accomplishment of identified outcomes (specific and clear outcomes will be defined jointly at time of financial investment)
BTU Emerging Idea Investments, supported by Whiting-Turner

Emerging Idea Investment funding is allocated for a one-year period, focused on supporting new and emerging community partnerships and projects. Consideration is given to proposals that are interdisciplinary and integrated with traditionally underserved populations. Previous investments have ranged from $4,000 to $8,000.

  • Must be built on existing work, meaning the idea should be derived from an area, project, direction, or class that TU has been involved with
  • The purpose should be to further investigate and dive into the idea's relevance and capability for TU
  • Applicants should have a willingness to explore new and potential cross-campus collaborations
  • Assessment and evaluation approach must be clearly identified
  • Application should identify what additional investments are needed
  • In order to ensure buy-in and support for this work, the emerging idea should have been discussed with and approved by the associated dean or vice president. This will be confirmed during the review process.
Application

BTU Investment Fund applications for FY21 are due by 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, February 12, 2020. All applications must be completed by a lead TU faculty or staff member.  Student led projects should apply through their faculty or staff liaison/advisor. Prior to requesting funds, the project for which funding is being requested must be entered into the BTU Database.

  • Application deadline: February 12, 2020
  • Practice pitches: Early April
  • Pitch presentations to BTU Council: April 29, 2020
  • Final decisions: Mid May, 2020

Apply now for BTU Investment Funds.

BTU Funding Requests Guidelines and Criteria

All BTU supported engagements must involve these key components

  • An expected outcome of positive university and community impact
  • Outcomes must directly link to at least one of the five BTU impact areas
  • An established or developing community partner
  • Led by a TU faculty or staff. Student led programs or projects must be submitted by their faculty or staff liaison/lead.
  • Evidence of creating an enriched learning environment

Additionally, the following criteria must be met

  • All engagements for which support is being requested must first be captured in the BTU Database
  • BTU enrichment, national visibility, and transportation support must be spent and reimbursed in the fiscal year in which it is approved (July 1–June 20)
  • BTU support is not considered a grant or an award and will be allocated based on actual expenses related to engagement and partnership work
  • Recipients of BTU support are required to complete an outcomes report and author a guest blog post at www.engagetu.com
  • Prior to submission, requests must first be shared and discussed with the appropriate Chair or Department Head
  • Funding requests must be submitted at least 10 business days prior to the date for which funding is needed
  • If there are last minute cancellations of events or of buses provided through BTU transportation, notification must take place at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled event and/or arrival time. Last-minute cancellations and no-shows without notice from the associated faculty or staff will be taken into consideration for future BTU funding requests.

 

Frequently asked questions

What do BTU resources support?
  • BTU Enrichment supports engagement activities such as event and material supplies, catering or meal needs, workshop supplies, gap funding, equipment, marketing materials, honorariums, stipends, and other activities directly related to qualifying community engagement and partnership work. Requests are limited to $2,000.
  • BTU Transportation supports the rental and/or utilization of vehicles, mileage reimbursement, and parking codes for faculty, staff, or students traveling off-campus, or partners traveling on-campus, for partnership and community engagement projects. 
  • BTU National Visibility supports travel for individuals in Continental United States with direct relation to presenting community engagement work at conferences or events. Requests are limited to $1,000.
  • BTU Priority Investments provide support over a 1-3 year period, focused on scaling, sustaining, aligning, and institutionalizing leading TU partnerships and community engagement projects.
  • BTU Emerging Idea Investments are funds allocated for a one-year period, focused on supporting new and emerging TU partnerships and community engagement projects.
What don’t BTU resources support?
  • Activities that are solely for the recruitment of potential students to Towson University or when the primary activity is a campus tour/visit
  • Curricular enhancement activities such as field trips or experiential learning opportunities that are not focused on extending partnership or community engagement work
  • International travel for faculty, staff, or students
  • Faculty research not connected to community engagement or partnership projects
  • Transportation off-campus not connected to community engagement or partnership projects
  • Transportation to public events on campus not connected to community engagement or partnership projects
Can I use BTU resources in combination with other internal TU resources or external sources?

Yes, BTU resources are meant to be used in conjunction with other resources to support community engagement and partnership work. Individuals requesting BTU resources are obligated to report other sources of support for their project in the BTU Database.

Once approved, what is the process for receiving BTU funding?

All approved funding requests will be made using departmental funds in compliance with University policies and procedures. After all related purchases are made, a Peoplesoft report must be submitted for review as well as department and account information for which the funds should be transferred. BTU funds will be transferred to the department based on actual expenses within the approved funding request.

Can I receive BTU support as an individual?

No. BTU funds will reimburse departments, not individuals. The only exception is travel through Tiger Travel.

Can I request BTU support more than once per fiscal year?

Yes, pending frequency, feasibility, and budget limitations.

What do I need to do to request BTU resources?
 

Your engagement should first be captured in the BTU Database. If you are unsure if your engagement is already captured, . When requesting support at www.towson.edu/BTUsupport, you will need to utilize your TUID, the 7-digits, in bold, located at the bottom of your TU ID card.

What do I need to include when requesting catering or meal tickets?
 

You will need to provide an event date, location, time, number of estimated attendees, and post-event a list of actual attendees. The Office of Partnerships and Outreach will purchase the meal tickets attached the request. Discounted meal tickets are available for specific engagements based on eligibility.

  What is the process and time period for getting reimbursed?
 

Reimbursements will only be made to departments and must all be submitted at one time only.  Every effort will be made to reimburse departments as quickly as possible once all information is provided.

What happens if my request for support is not approved?

If a BTU request is not approved for any reason, the Office of Partnerships and Outreach will make every effort to assist you in locating other institutional support for your efforts.

What is the review process and timeline for BTU funding?

Requests for transportation, enrichment, and national visibility support will be reviewed with decisions made based on the above criteria on a rolling basis with notifications being made on a weekly basis.