Student Funding: Understand and Apply For Funding From Colby
Take the time to explore this webpage from top to bottom (especially “Important Considerations” below). The information here will help maximize your chances for a successfully funded application. During each funding cycle, the application will only be live on our online platform for a limited number of days and can be accessed below under “Start Your Funding Application.” You may always develop your essays answers in advance after selecting “Prepare Your Application in Advance” below.
Students may be funded up to three times during their fours years at Colby for three unique experiences. We recommend an internship, a research or other independent study project, and an experience abroad.
Faculty-led off-campus courses: You must be accepted into the course or waitlisted to submit an application for funding.
Research and other independent studies: You must find a faculty supervisor to approve your project and related budget BEFORE submitting your funding application.
Internships: You do NOT need to have fully secured an opportunity to apply but the application must be based on one specific, well-researched opportunity. If the committee offers an award based on the merits of the application, you have up to one opportunity to revise and submit for a different experience.
Other types: Many funds are not to be used to pay for tuition or fees from third party programs and courses offered by other college and universities in the U.S. are prohibited. Funding committees will consider programs such as short-term study abroad experiences on a case-by-case basis. Bunche and Presidential Scholar Grants have broader criteria and may be used for these programs.
You must login to the online platform (only during the application period) under “Start Your Application” and sign-in in the upper right hand side using your Colby email and password.
Once you fill out and submit the General Application Part I and then the General Application Part II (or The Faculty-Led Course Application), you will automatically be considered for all funds that DavisConnects directly administers. Presidential Scholars and Bunche Scholars will also need to complete these steps to be considered for their grants.
If qualified, you may also be eligible for funding sources outside of DavisConnects and prompted to answer additional questions to these “Recommended Opportunities.” If you apply to these opportunities, your application will be considered by both the DavisConnects funding committee and the committee within that respective department. You will only be able to fill out these short, supplementary applications by clicking “Finish and Submit” on the General Application Part II, so make sure to plan enough time before the deadline to submit all applications.
The following departments will host their applications starting Jan Plan ’24. Click the links for these Recommended Opportunities to check eligibility and prepare your answers in advance:
- Center for the Arts and Humanities Research Grants
- Economics Department
- Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs
- Government Department
- Job Barry Grant for Library Research for English Majors
- Kristina Stahl Creative Writing Fund
- Linde Packman Lab for Biosciences Innovation
- Oak Institute for Human Rights
- Sarah Janney Internship and Research Grants for History Majors
Jan Plan 2024 Faculty-Led Courses:
Application Opens: Monday, October 2 @ 12:00 AM EST
Application Closes: Sunday, October 8 @ 11:59 PM EST
Award Notifications: Thursday, October 19 by 5:00 PM EST
Accept or Decline Award: Monday, October 23 by 5:00 PM EST
Jan Plan 2024 Internships, Research, Other:
Application Opens: Monday, October 2 @ 12:00 AM EST
Application Closes: Friday, October 13 @ 11:59 PM EST
Jon Barry Grant Closes: Wednesday, October 18 @ 11:59 PM EST
Sarah Janney Research Grant Closes: Friday, October 20 @ 11:59 PM EST
Award Notifications: Wednesday, October 25 by 5:00 PM EST
Fund Disbursement Requirements: Friday, December 2 by 5:00 PM EST
Spring 2024 Internships, Research, Other:
Application Opens: Wednesday, January 10 @ 12:00 AM EST
Application Closes: Friday, January 19 @ 11:59 PM EST
Award Notifications: Wednesday, January 31 by 5:00 PM EST
Fund Disbursement Requirements: Friday, February 9 by 5:00 PM EST
Summer 2024 Internships, Research, Other:
Application Opens: Monday, March 11 @ 12:00 AM EST
Application Closes: Friday, March 22 @ 11:59 PM EST
Award Notifications: Wednesday, April 17 by 5:00 PM EST
Fund Disbursement Requirements: Wednesday, May 15 by 5:00 PM EST
The following essays are the heart of the funding application. It is our hope that you use these prompts beyond the funding application, developing them throughout your remaining time at Colby in order to practice writing persuasive narratives that help to tell your story. They will be useful to leverage for cover letters, job interviews, or perhaps a personal statement for graduate school or fellowship. In addition to these questions, the funding application includes short-answer questions as well as a question asking you to describe your respective project, program, or the organization you’ll be interning with.
- The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) has identified eight core competencies for what they call “career readiness.” These are a set of foundational skills that prepare you to enter any industry. They are, understandably, in high demand across all industries. At Colby, you’ll have many opportunities to develop these essential skills!
a. Use this link to review the list of eight core competencies and then choose one that you feel is the most important competency to develop over the course of the experience for which you are applying for funding:
– Career & Self Development
– Critical thinking
– Equity & Inclusion
b. Think about your current relationship to the competency you’ve chosen: How confident are you currently in your practice of it? Use a scale of 0-10 to indicate how confident you are in your practice of that competency. A rating of 0 indicates that you are not at all confident and a rating of 10 indicates that you’re very confident.
c. Please explain how you hope to develop this competency during your experience. [minimum of 100 words, maximum of 300]
- Over the course of your career, you are likely to have more than one professional role. In fact, you will probably have multiple opportunities to make changes in your career, whether through minor adjustments or more significant pivots! At Colby, you can explore your interests, learn about yourself, expand your knowledge of available professional opportunities, and refine your postgraduate plans. We call this process orienting to your “true north.”
a. Please rate how confident you are in your ability to orient to your “true north.” A rating of 0 indicates that you are not at all confident in your ability and a rating of 10 indicates that you are very confident in your ability.
b. Please describe how the experience for which you are applying for funding will contribute to your professional development or post-graduate plans. Feel free to discuss where you see yourself in this journey, whether you are certain of your professional path or open to changing direction. [minimum of 100 words, maximum of 300]
- The ability to draw and explain meaningful connections between your academic program of study and experiential, co-curricular, and/or community-based learning opportunities to a prospective employer can be a powerful tool that helps you successfully transition from college into the field of your choice.
a. Please rate your ability to explain the value of your Colby education so far. A rating of 0 indicates that you are unable to articulate its value and a rating of 10 indicates that you are able to articulate its value in a compelling way.
b. Please discuss your academic goals at Colby and how the experience for which you are applying for funding will enhance these goals. Feel free to discuss broad goals related to the liberal arts or your chosen major, if you have one. [minimum of 100 words, maximum of 300]
- Global engagement is integral to a Colby education. By “global” we mean both the diverse peoples, cultures, and languages beyond the United States and the range of peoples, cultures, and languages that live and thrive right here—in the United States, Maine, Waterville, and on Mayflower Hill. Colby aims to support the development of core competencies related to global learning and literacy.
a. Choose one of the following that you feel is the most important competency to develop over the course of this experience:
– Understand how one’s actions affect and are affected by local and global systems
– Think critically about how social identities are constructed
– Develop Intercultural competence, which is the ability to communicate with, understand, and work with people of various backgrounds, values, world views, and behaviors
– Work collaboratively to address the world’s most pressing and enduring challenges
b. How confident are you currently in the competency you selected above? A rating of 0 indicates that you are not at all confident and a rating of 10 indicates that you’re very confident.
c. Please explain how you hope to develop this competency through the course of your experience. [minimum of 100 words, maximum of 300]
All applicants will need to send a reference form on the funding application to a Colby staff or faculty reference by inputting their name and email address. This should be someone that knows you well and can provide a character and/or academic reference. It is important to notify them of your plans and ask if they would be willing to provide one in advance. The reference is not due by the funding deadline but it will help the funding committee make a determination. References must be submitted by the fund disbursement deadline and so all funding offers are contingent on a positive reference.
Applicants are required to use a standard budget sheet, available to download on the funding application and to download below in advance. The budget sheet below is an example of what a good budget looks like for both faculty-led courses off campus and other experiences. You may delete the example information and use this sheet to develop your application.
- Typical grant awards range on average from $2,500 – $3,500 but depend on level of need and the overall budget proposal. Award maximum is $7,000.
- Awards are largely for living and travel experiences. DavisConnects does not fund equipment, materials, or other types of physical supplies. Other departments, including the Bunche and Presidential programs, may fund these supplies as appropriate.
- Students on financial aid only may include “lost wages” in their budget sheets in the expense section (up to $500 for Jan Plan and $2,000 during semesters and summer). This means that they are giving up a paid opportunity, and largely prevented from working, in order to have a more valuable, but unpaid or underpaid experience.
- Paid internships are eligible for funding only if expenses exceed income. A lost wages calculation may be applied to paid internships in order for the applicant to net up to $500 for Jan Plan or $2,000 for semesters and summer. For example, if expenses equal $4,000 but income equals $3,000, applicants may request $1,000 to cover expenses plus another $2,000 (or $500 for Jan Plan) to pocket at the end of the experience. The $7,000 funding cap applies to this determination.
- Students may be funded three times throughout their four years. It is possible to be funded twice in one year but the experiences must be unique and will count towards their three funded opportunities.
- While all awards are competitive, many grant and fellowship funds are designated for need-based students; in some cases, applicants must have a current academic year financial aid application at Colby to be eligible. Students who do not receive financial aid are encouraged to fill out a financial need explanation statement to make the case as to why they are requesting funds.
- Applicants should not tie their plans to winning these very competitive awards; it’s important for applicants to make alternative plans in the event they do not qualify or are not selected. Non-refundable deposits for airfare and housing should not be made before award notification unless applicants are willing to take that loss.
- Fund awards are not meant to completely reimburse costs but to supplement expenses incurred during the experience (lodging, travel, meals, etc.). No part of the award serves as compensation for the experience even if applicants will be prevented from accepting paid work necessary for their livelihood. A case for lost wages may be made in the proposed budget and funding committees may consider this on a case-by-case basis for financial aid students only.
- Students do not need to have secured a position to apply for internship or program funds, but they will be required to provide confirmation from the organization before funds are released. Students should complete their application based on a specific opportunity that is most likely to take place. Colby faculty-led courses and independent studies must have prior approval before applying for funds.
- If applicants who have applied for internship or program funding are offered an award but plans change, they will be eligible (and are required) to update and resubmit their application one time by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The funding committee reserves the right to change the award amount previously offered.
- Donor Relations will reach out to all grant recipients immediately following the experience with a questionnaire to be completed. Answers will be shared with donors. This is a requirement for those who received funding for their experiences.
- If applicants are granted funding from another source at Colby, they are required to notify the Director of Global Experiences at DavisConnects. Each funding committee reserves the right to adjust awards for students who receive funding from other sources.
- Applicants must be current Colby students and not on a leave of absence during the term in which the award will be used.
- We are not able to fund seniors during the summer funding cycle. The last opportunity for funding is spring semester during senior year.
- Many funds are not to be used to pay for tuition or fees from third party programs or courses offered by other college and universities. Funding committees will consider programs on a case-by-case basis. It is preferred that awards reimburse costs for registered internships, research positions, or Jan Plan courses led by Colby faculty.
- Grants do not cover academic semester (or yearlong) abroad or off-campus experiences as financial aid is portable. Please email Off-Campus Study at email@example.com for more information.
- Internships at Colby (with a faculty or staff member supervising) are not allowed as all non-credit Colby positions would be considered paid employment.
- Funds granted must be used solely for the purpose outlined in the final application submission. Students have an obligation to disclose in writing any changes to the application information or outright cancellation of the experience by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Failure to do so may result in an obligation to repay or forfeit the funding, and may constitute misconduct under Colby’s student and academic misconduct procedures.
- Colby continues to disallow travel to countries designated Level 4 by the U.S. State Department. Countries designated Level 3 require a petition to the Travel Advisory Committee. All travelers are required to review U.S. State Department travel advisories with their families to safely determine their own comfort level with risks. Visit the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory page to view the designation of your proposed destination. If needed, download petition here.
Please make an appointment in Handshake for info sessions and 1:1 appointments by visiting this link.
Please direct all funding questions to email@example.com
INFO SESSIONS VIA ZOOM (Weeks 9/11 – 10/2)
Tuesdays & Wednesdays 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Thursdays 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM
DROP-IN APPOINTMENTS (Weeks 9/11 – 10/2)
Mary Low Coffee House: Mondays 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cotter Union: Wednesdays 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM
20-MINUTE 1:1 APPOINTMENT BLOCKS (9/11 – 10/2)
Mondays 9:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Mondays 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Fridays 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Fridays 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Applying for funding through DavisConnects is easy. During each funding cycle, click the button below. Then sign in with your Colby username and password in the upper righthand side.
If you are offered an award in the funding portal, you will need to click “Accept” to gain access to the Post-Acceptance Application. All sections applicable to your experience type must be completed by the deadline.
Once these steps are met, DavisConnects staff will notify Student Financial Services (SFS). Your money will be released via direct deposit (if you have it set up with the College) or by paper check (which can be picked up in the SFS office). Once notified, your award will take time to be processed through accounts payable and depending on your bank policy, be deposited into your account.
If it is a Colby faculty-led Jan Plan credit course or a Global Innovation or Global Lab course during the spring or fall semester, your deposit for enrollment will be made automatically by Student Financial Services. Additionally, those students participating in a Colby faculty-led course only need to address #9 – #11 below as most post-acceptance requirements will be handled by the faculty leader.
1) For internships: the post-acceptance application will host a form, similar to the faculty/staff reference form, that the hosting supervisor must complete once you email it to them. This will include the following:
- Colby Student Name
- Hosting Institution Name
- Address of Hosting Institution Work Site
- Hosting Institution Supervisor Name
- Hosting Supervisor Phone/Email Address
- Student Experience/Position
- Anticipated Dates of Experience
- Level of Compensation (if any)
- The experience will be either a) remote or b) include some form of on-site attendance
2) If it is a research position:
Register the experience through the Registrar as an Independent Study (summer research experiences must be registered for the following fall semester). Take a screenshot or save the confirmation email as proof of registration.
3) For an internship: find and secure a faculty sponsor:
- Your sponsor can be someone who is comfortable evaluating your internship experience, even outside of their discipline area to grant you credit. This decision is at the discretion of the faculty member.
- Come to an agreement with your sponsor regarding the format and content of your final project if you are pursuing the optional academic credit hour.
4) To register an internship for transcript notation or academic credit:
Fill out the online application form. You can find detailed information on the Internships page by clicking here.
This application requires specifics such as company name, address, site supervisor’s name, and hours to be worked. The minimum number of hours onsite for an internship is 100 hours. Most Jan Plan internships involve 30 hours per week. The application also requires a detailed proposal that should:
- Specify the anticipated responsibilities or projects.
- State what you hope to learn.
- State how the internship relates to your long-term goals, such as exploring a career field.
- Specify the nature and scope of the final academic product if you are applying for the optional academic credit hour.
5) You will receive a confirmation email if your faculty sponsor and DavisConnects approves your internship.
Your internship will appear as an “090” course on your schedule. If you were approved for academic credit, the one credit will show there. You may register for transcript notation only, which does not require a final project (academic credit requires a final project to be completed). Please note: you MUST complete a daily journal and at least 100 working hours regardless of which option you choose.
Successful completion of internship assignments is a requirement of funding. You may only withdraw (by the due date) if the internship falls through or due to extenuating circumstances. Otherwise, incomplete requirements will lead to a grade of NC on your transcript.
6) All funding recipients (except those awarded for faculty-led courses) will be required to fill out a Release of Liability form. This form will be available in the post-acceptance application and can be downloaded here. If you are under 18 years of age, a parent or guardian must also sign.
7) You may need to seek committee approval if traveling to a State Department Level III country and upload approval to the post-acceptance application. During the pandemic, Colby has adopted a broader range of metrics to assess travel risks, including U.S. State Department advisories, CDC warnings, and advice from colleagues in the host country. Colby continues to disallow travel to countries designated Level 4 by the U.S. State Department if the designation is for reasons other than COVID-19. Countries designated Level 3 for reasons other than COVID-19 may require a petition to the Travel Advisory Committee. All travelers are required to review U.S. State Department travel advisories with their families to safely determine their own comfort level with risks. Visit the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory page to view the designation of your proposed destination.
8) All funded students traveling to a destination outside of the U.S., except international students returning to their home country, will be automatically enrolled in mandatory, but complimentary comprehensive travel security/medical insurance under the iNext Ultimate Plan. You are welcome to arrange for any additional insurance that you consider adequate to meet any and all needs for payment of medical or other travel-related expenses. iNext insurance is intended to provide medical and travel security coverage for abroad travel but is not a substitute for basic health insurance. Students who are enrolled in the Colby-sponsored student health insurance plan through Cross Insurance are covered within the U.S. and abroad, with the exception of international students; international students do not have coverage in their home country but do have coverage in the U.S. and other nations.
See the Cross Insurance webpage for more information at (https://www.crossagency.com/college-health/colby-college-2023-2024/).
Please click on the links below for more information about iNext:
iNext Comprehensive Ultimate Group Plan FAQs
9) Colby staff or faculty reference: An award determination will be made with or without the required Colby staff or faculty reference. If the award is made in your favor, fund disbursement is conditional on receiving a positive reference before the post-acceptance deadline.
10) Disclosure of Changes:
An acknowledgement that by accepting funding from the College, including any DavisConnects funding, Colby College has relied on the information provided in your application in its decision to award funding and an understanding that the funds granted must be used solely for the purpose outlined in the final submission of your application. You have an obligation to disclose in writing any changes to the application information or outright cancellation of the experience by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Failure to do so may result in an obligation for you to repay or forfeit the funding, and may constitute misconduct under Colby’s student and academic misconduct procedures.
11) Donor Questionnaire:
An acknowledgement that you are aware that Donor Relations will reach out to you immediately following your experience with a questionnaire to be completed. Your answers will be shared with donors. This is a requirement for those who received funding for their experiences.
Non-compliance could compromise future funding.