Acquiring funding is part of the research process. Faculty diligently search and compete for limited resources. To help with the process, consider the following suggestions:

  • Each undergraduate college receives funding from the Undergraduate Research Office to support student research. Refer to the College Resource page to learn about the application process for your respective college.
  • Talk with your faculty mentor for ideas about professional organizations or agencies related to your work. Sometimes these organizations offer scholarships and grants to undergraduate students.
  • Be prepared to “cobble” together your funding—you may not find one source to provide all of your funding. However, you might find an office or several smaller grants that might pay for a portion of your expenses. Make sure to prepare a spreadsheet that outlines your anticipated expenses.
  • Search these websites for additional funding opportunities:
    • MSU Library Grant Site focuses primarily on funding opportunities for individuals, such as financial aid or scholarships for students.
    • MSUFCU Internship Opportunity Award provides support to undergraduates participating in an unpaid internship.
    • ASMSU offers a travel award called "The Research Fund".  Contact the Vice President for Student Allocations at for more information.
    • Some of the Council on Undergraduate Research Divisions offer student travel grants.

Undergraduate Student Travel Support

NOTE: All non-essential university travel is suspended indefinitely. Requests for travel support during the 2020-21 academic year will not be accepted. Visit the Travel @ State website for additional guidance.

The Undergraduate Research Office has some funding available to support undergraduate student travel to professional conferences. The funds have a few stipulations:

  1. Applicants must be currently enrolled undergraduate students at MSU, who are working towards their undergraduate degrees. Consideration will be given on a case by case basis for seniors presenting their work during the semester immediately following graduation. Applicants may receive funding once per fiscal year.
  2. Applications must be received and approved prior to conference travel. Bear in mind that it may take up to 2 weeks for a response.
  3. Undergraduate students must be presenting their work—not just attending the conference.
  4. The college or academic department is responsible for completing the necessary travel authorization forms for each student. See the Office of the Controller for more information on MSU travel procedures.
  5. A financial contribution is required from another MSU unit (i.e. academic department or college). The Undergraduate Research Office will try to provide a matching contribution up to $300.  However, a match is not guaranteed. Contact your college dean or department chair for assistance.
  6. A budget of estimated total expenses should be included with each request, along with contact information for the person within your department or college (typically a fiscal officer) who has agreed to assist you with university travel request and reimbursement.

In order to be considered for conference travel support, please complete and submit this application to Students traveling or presenting with a group, should submit applications together in one packet.  Students are encouraged to submit their application as early as possible and prior to travel for the conference. Each request will be considered on an individual basis; the funds are available on a first-come, first serve basis.

Entrepreneurial Undergraduate Research

The Gerstacker Foundation Entrepreneurial Grant Program is an opportunity for undergraduate students from the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines to compete for funding for a research concept with entrepreneurial potential. Students will develop a concept, conduct the research, and present their findings with the goal of getting their concept into use or production. Interested students should contact Paul Jaques, Director of Student and Community Engagement at Spartan Innovations, by email or call 517-884-4548. For more detailed program information visit The Hatch.

Undergraduate Research Education Abroad Program Scholarship

The Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education (APUE) and the Office for Education Abroad provides financial support for undergraduate MSU students to participate in approved accredited study abroad programs that have an undergraduate research component. Applicants must have a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher at the time of application and have applied for a research study abroad program.

To be considered, submit your application and essay to the MSU Office for Education Abroad by the following application deadlines:

  • Friday, October 18, 2019, for spring 2020
  • Monday, March 2, 2020, for summer & fall 2020 and academic year 2020-21 programs 

Scholarships of $500 will be awarded to recipients chosen by a scholarship review committee. For spring applicants, winners will notified by Friday, November 15, 2019. Winners will be announced by Friday, April 3, 2020, for summer, fall and academic year programs.

If you have questions about the application process or award, contact Lynn Aguado, MSU Office for Education Abroad, 517-353-8920 or


Undergraduate Research Office Conference Travel Support

The Undergraduate Research Office travel support funds are available for students who have been selected to present research at a professional conference or workshop

Undergraduate Research Study Abroad Program Scholarship

The APUE and EA Research Study Abroad Program Scholarship provides financial support for undergraduate MSU students to participate in approved accredited education abroad programs that have an undergraduate research component.