What is an URCO Grant?
The Undergraduate Research and Creative Opportunities (URCO) Grant Program, funded by the Office of Research, was established in 1975 to support worthy independent student projects. Since it's inception, more than 1,000 grants have been awarded, funding projects in every discipline. You can learn more about what recipients have done with their funding by reviewing the projects of past URCO winners.
The URCO guidebook answers frequently asked questions and offers sample proposals for potential applicants. Students should review proposal instructions as they develop their projects and prior to applying.
As of Spring 2023, Undergraduate Research & Creative Opportunities grant applications will require an additional document.
All mentors sponsoring URCO grants are now required to complete a mentoring compact with all student applicants. This is a simple outline of the expectations and responsibilities of all parties involved, which is then signed and dated.
Learn more about the application process
To assist mentors in creating a compact, we will host an interactive workshop on Tuesday, February 7 at 12-1:15pm. Please RSVP to attend!
- Fall: June 1-15
- Spring: October 1-15
- Summer: February 1-15 (Application deadline extended to 11:59pm, February 28!)
- Submit a complete application
- Attend an URCO orientation (after receiving the grant)
- Present your research (after completing the project)
- Submit a report (after completing the project)
Writing Center tutors have experience with URCO proposal components and are also available to assist applicants in individual appointments.
The Office of Research provides a scholarship opportunity which adds $500 to the standard URCO award. This scholarship is for projects that exemplify how research connects USU to communities at a local, statewide and global level. Interested students are asked to provide additional application materials to qualify for the URCO Impact Initiative.
The Office of Research and the Geosciences Department have partnered to provide a named grant in remembrance and celebration of Evan Millsap, an exceptional student, researcher, and person. The Evan Millsap Memorial URCO grant is awarded to proposals in Geosciences that meet the standard of excellence that Evan embodied in his own URCO proposal.
URCO grants provide an opportunity for undergraduate researchers to fund their own projects. The application process provides direct experience in project design, grantsmanship, and technical writing and communication; funded students gain additional experience in managing a grant budget, compiling research reports, and in running independent projects.
An URCO experience helps students become more competitive for future scholarships and fellowships, graduate school programs, or career opportunities. Not only will successful students receive a scholarship to support the time and effort they pour into their research projects, they will also gain practical skills that help them stand out among their peers and demonstrated outcomes of these skills.
money icon Research Funding
Research requires resources and URCO grants fund up to $1,000 for costs related to conducting research for your project.
people icon Mentorship
URCO grants provide a meaningful opportunity to be mentored by faculty members specific to research of your choice.
key icon Access
Use the ownership of a project to build your portfolio and gain access to conferences, showcases, and networking opportunities.
road icon Head Start
Get started on your interests, not just coursework. Customize your education with an independent, mentored, project.
book icon Credentials
Build skills to make a stand-out resume or graduate school application.
rocket icon DiscoveryFeel what it’s like to create or discover something new.
The URCO grant was a keystone in my education and undergraduate research experience. The process of having to write a full grant, work with professors, create budgets, setting up and conducting a full, novel experiment and being able to present my research in a professional environment was unparalleled with anything I had done before in my education. When applying for graduate schools this last year, the URCO grant experience made it possible for me to say that not only had I been involved in undergraduate research, but that it was my own original experiment. It allowed me to say that as an undergrad, I’ve had the opportunity to present my research at three different research symposiums. Most importantly though, it gave me the opportunity to network with many professionals across different fields and resulted in many lasting connections.