Basic Needs Microgrant

The application period for BNM is now closed due to an unexpectedly large quantity of applications. Watch for our newsletter updates for the Spring application round!

The GPSC Basic Needs Microgrant (BNM) aims to support undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in times of great financial hardships. The goal is to alleviate some of the financial burden students might be experiencing by helping them with healthcare, academics, hygiene, childcare, transportation, and/or housing-related essential costs. The BNM is open to all students who demonstrate a genuine unmet financial need, and we encourage applications from historically underrepresented groups including, but not limited to Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) students, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Intersex, Asexual (LGBTQIA+) students, first-generation students, single parents, international students, refugees, undocumented students, immigrant students, students with disabilities or chronic illnesses, and students from low socioeconomic status backgrounds. Overall, special weight will be given to applications requesting funding for mental healthcare costs.

The goals of the Basic Needs Microgrant are to:

  1. Provide short-term microgrants, to assist undergraduate, graduate, and professional students facing financial hardships.
  2. Provide financial aid for students to focus on their academic success.
  3. Provide access to basic services such as medical and mental health services and other essential costs.

Please read ALL of the sections on this web page before you submit an application. To ensure your application receives full consideration, please check the GPSC BNM Grant Evaluation Rubric and fill out your application accordingly. Questions regarding any part of the application process may be directed to the GPSC Grants Office at gpscgrants@arizona.edu.

To complete your grant application, you will be directed to Qualtrics, a third party survey platform. By continuing with this application, you agree to provide your student information to Qualtrics, and to having Qualtrics receive and process that student information, in order to complete your application and be considered for a grant award.

GPSC BNM Grant Evaluation Rubric

Online Application

 

The GPSC BNM grants are intended to cover up to $200 to alleviate some of the financial burden students might be experiencing by helping them with healthcare, academics, hygiene, childcare,
transportation, and/or housing-related essential costs.

The requested items may include, but are not limited to:

  • Fitness equipment (mats, dumbbells, weights, fitness application memberships, etc.)
  • Technology for remote work (computer equipment such as keyboards, video cameras, office equipment, printers, ink, etc.)
  • Personal hygiene products (feminine products, soap, shampoo, hand sanitizer, etc.)
  • Childcare products (diapers, formula, medication, maternity/postpartum products, etc.)
  • Health (reproductive health needs, first-aid supplies, prescription drugs, copays for health services, band-aids, face masks, etc.)
  • Automotive (windshield wipers, subsidy towards replacement parts, oil changes, etc.)
  • Housing (replacement keys, late fees for housing payments, groceries, etc.)
  • Parking and Transportation (parking passes, bus/train tickets, etc.)
  • Academic (glasses, learning equipment, notebooks, textbooks, laptops, pencils, pens, etc.)
  • Tax needs

Prohibited items include:

  • Tuition and fees
  • Professional development / social club membership dues
  • Any items that are already covered under one of the other GPSC grants (travel, research, project-related expenses, etc.)

  • Applicants must be University of Arizona graduate, undergraduate or professional or undergraduate students at the time of award. 
  • Applicants may only submit one application at a time. 
  • Applicants are only eligible to receive two BNM Grants per academic year.

  • The number of awards is contingent upon availability of funds and the number of applications received.  BNG is not a guaranteed source of funding.
  • Applications are reviewed by students from various career paths and disciplines.  After the judges submit their evaluation scores, a cutoff score is generated based on the number of applications and the amount of funds available.
  • For information regarding the necessary components of a BNG Grant application as well as the criteria used by judges to evaluate BNG grant applications, please refer to the GPSC BNG Grant Evaluation Rubric.

GPSC BNM will have continuous  rounds throughout the academic year, starting at the beginning of every month and closing at the end of each month. All required materials must be submitted to the online portal by 11:55 PM Arizona Time on the day of the deadline. No exceptions will be made.

  • An automated submission confirmation email is generated once an online application is submitted.
  • Applicants will be notified via email when their application status changes (Accepted, Declined, etc.). Applicants may also check the online application portal for status updates. 
  • Applications are reviewed after the application deadline closes. Award decisions will be sent 2-4 weeks after the deadline.
  • If awarded a BNG grant, the applicant will be asked to accept or decline the award. Upon accepting the award, the approved amount will be distributed through the awardee's Bursar's account as a stipend within two to three weeks after award notification. Stipends are considered taxable income and may affect financial aid status. 
  • Applicants who were not awarded are encouraged to reapply during subsequent rounds, provided that all eligibility criteria are met (see the “Eligibility” section above).

  • If you are awarded a BNG Grant but would like to decline your award, please notify the Grants Office at gpscgrants@email.arizona.edu immediately for instructions on how to return unused funds. If taxes were automatically withheld from your award, only the award amount released to you is to be returned to the GPSC. 
  • If less than 90% of awarded GPSC funds are used, then that student will be required to reimburse the University of Arizona for the unspent funds. Please notify us of your unused funds at gpscgrants@email.arizona.edu.

  • Each GPSC grant application is reviewed and evaluated by 2-3 volunteer UA students.
  • Awardees may be asked to serve as judges for following GPSC BNM grant application rounds.  BNM grant reviewers will receive a small financial compensation for the service provided.
  • Any undergraduate, graduate or professional student may volunteer to serve as a judge. Serving as a GPSC Grants Judge allows would-be applicants to obtain an insider's perspective on the evaluation process. Other reasons to be a judge include:
    • Formulating a more competitive application by reviewing actual applications
    • Additional service or volunteer experience for the relevant sections of your CV or resume
    • Obtaining an insider's perspective on an evaluation process similar to how major granting agencies (NSF/NIH/NEH) award research grants
    • Being involved in a central part of student governance
  • If you are interested in serving as a GPSC BNM Grants Judge, please sign-up here.
  • If you are interested in serving as a judge for other GPSC Grants programs (ReaP, Travel, POD, PPG), please sign-up here.

Confidentiality Requirement for GPSC Applicants and Reviewers-

Purpose:

The Graduate & Professional Student Council (GPSC) at the University of Arizona takes seriously our responsibility to maintain confidentiality throughout the review process. This policy serves to remind GPSC Officials, GPSC Directors, and Peer judges of their responsibility concerning confidentiality in the application review process.

Measures to Ensure Confidentiality:

  • GPSC Grants & Funding policy directs applicants to not include any personal identifiers in their application documents.
  • Applicants may need to identify in grant applications information that the applicant considers being trade secrets, information that is commercial or financial, or information that is privileged or confidential.
  • When such information is included in the application it is with the understanding that the information will be used or disclosed only for the evaluation of the application.
  • The information contained in applications shall not be used or disclosed except for evaluation purposes unless disclosure is mandated by University Policy or applicable law.
  • An applicant may not contact student reviewers/ judges or Council members who potentially may be involved in the evaluation of an application. Applicants may request information and clarifications only from the Grants Director or the Funding Administrator.
  • Student reviewers/ judges and Council members are instructed to direct all such inquiries to the attention of, and notify directly, the GPSC Grants Office.

GPSC is committed to protecting such information, including measures to ensure confidentiality in the review.

1) Before participating in the initial review for grant applications every individual involved in the process must certify a Confidentiality and Non – Disclosure Rules [Click Here for Confidential Agreement] before gaining access to information about the applications, proposals, or review. GPSC is not liable for the intentional breach of confidentiality by reviewers.

2) Data Security

  • GPSC uses a third - party platform Qualtrics for Grants application, submission, and management.
  • GPSC not liable for third-party security breach and hacking of our emails, computers, cloud, and servers.

Thank you to our supporters!

BNM grants are made possible by funds provided by the Student Services Fees, GPSC, and the Graduate College. Thank you to all of our partners for their meaningful contributions to graduate and professional student advancement.