The Jeffrey Boettcher Fund Application
The Jeffrey Boettcher Fund for Field Study in Biology was established to assist Michigan State University undergraduates undertake personal study and research. The Fund honors the memory of Jeff Boettcher, who attended MSU and wanted to become a professional biologist. The Fund is intended to help other students have the benefits of experiences he so much enjoyed.
Three prioritized categories of projects are supported by the Fund. Usually, projects in all three categories are funded. Projects may be formal courses, independent study, original research, or any other sort of scholarly activity. The priority categories are:
1. Projects that involve off-campus field study in marine biology and/or invertebrate biology (study at Kellogg Biological Station is included);
2. Projects focused on invertebrates or aquatic vertebrates (freshwater or marine) with 50% or more of project time spent in the field (on or off campus) rather than laboratories;
3. Projects of any other sort that focus on biological study with an emphasis on the outdoors/field.
This description is intended to answer many of the questions you might have concerning the Fund. If questions remain, do not hesitate to contact the Chairperson of the Awards Committee (via Department of Integrative Biology, Michigan State University).
To be eligible for an award from the Fund, you must be an undergraduate student at Michigan State University at the time of application, and you must be an undergraduate, graduate, or other classification of student at the University at the time your funded project is carried out.
Five factors are paramount in determining whether an application is successful:
1. The merit of the planned project
2. The quality (e.g., clarity and specificity) of the application itself
3. The preparation of the student to profit from the project
4. Evidence of the student's commitment to academic achievement
5. The ability of the Fund to make a significant monetary contribution to the project budget.
Preference is given to students who are at least half way through their undergraduate program of study; applicants at earlier stages should be especially explicit in explaining their preparation for their planned project. Financial need is not usually a factor; most awards are made without evidence of financial need. However, students who demonstrate financial need may receive exceptional levels of funding.
Amount of Funding Available
Awards are usually in the range of $300-$1,000. Requests for more than $1,000, unless thoroughly justified, may actually decrease your chances of receiving an award because the Awards Committee ordinarily avoids making commitments to projects that lack complete budgets. The Awards Committee strives for fairness in all ways. Sometimes, if required by fairness to all applicants, an award may exceed the amount requested.
Awards Contingent on Full Funding
Although an application might be successful in the competition, the applicant’s project will not actually be funded unless the project is actually carried out as described. Thus, applicants should ensure that the sum total of all their available funds will match the total of their costs. A place to show this match is on the application form.
Communications with the Boettcher Family
Award recipients are encouraged to communicate with Jeff Boettcher's family. Communication of this sort provides an important opportunity to experience the spirit of this memorial fund.
All application materials, including required letters of recommendation, are due on or before March 15, 2022. All materials can be submitted online using the form below except for the Letters of Recommendation.
Letters of Recommendation should be emailed directly to Eila Roberts (email@example.com) by the letter writers. Letters will be treated confidentially by the awards committee.
Applications must be made on the application form that follows. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please be certain to respond to all questions, provide a budget, and submit all necessary additional documents.
Questions about eligibility or other aspects of making application should be directed to the Chairperson of the Awards Committee. If you need extra time, the Awards Committee will try to accommodate you, but to be considered you must contact the Chairperson of the Awards Committee in advance. The Chairperson ise Eila Roberts (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Announcement of Awards
Awards are usually announced by the Awards Committee about 10 days following the deadline date.
It is your responsibility to ensure that all application materials are in the possession of the Awards Committee on time.