Qualified students can apply to receive funding for internships and various opportunities in the field of social impact. Before applying, please thoroughly read through this page to understand if you qualify for a grant.
If you are requesting a grant for a trip that will include traveling outside of the United States, pay special attention to the “Travel Restriction Information” tab below.
Ballard Center Grant Process
All grant applications are scored on the following two criteria: the Person Score and the Experience Score.
1. Person Score: To provide individuals a score, Ballard Center representatives seek to understand student involvement within the various Ballard Center programs, classes, etc. All students receiving grants are passionate about social innovation and want to (1) work in social innovation, (2) start a social venture, and/or, (3) find new ways to tackle old problems via research. Students receive a score of 1-10 based on the following criteria:
- 9-10 score. The student has received the Ballard Scholar for Social Innovation and is involved with other Ballard Center programs.
- 7-8 score. The student has a committed plan to receive the Ballard Scholar, has taken the two Ballard Scholar foundation courses, and is involved with at least one other Ballard Center program.
- 5-6 score. The student has a committed plan to receive Ballard Scholar and has taken the MSB 375 Social Innovation “Do Good Better” course.
- 3-4 score. The student has completed two or more Ballard Center courses and participates regularly in one or more of our events or clubs.
- 1-2 score. The student has been involved with the Ballard Center in some way.
2. Experience Score: The Ballard Center seeks to understand how likely the experience is aligned with the Ballard Center’s mission to teach students how to solve social problems. For an internship, consulting, or research opportunity to obtain a high score, it needs to meet one or more of the following criteria:
- The opportunity is provided by an Ashoka Fellow, Skoll Foundation Awardee, Schwab Foundation Awardee, Mulago Foundation Fellow, Peery Foundation Grantee, Acumen Fellow, Echoing Green Fellow, etc. Similar organizations who are professionally vetted as best-in-class—not just funded—will also be considered.
- The opportunity is provided by an organization that achieved “Best Venture” status in the Ballard Center’s Social Venture Academy.
- The opportunity involves doing research with faculty on high social impact efforts.
Please note that many applications fall somewhere between the “Likely” and “Very Unlikely” (see picture for more context). The scores are weighted according to our criteria and all other applications. If you don’t fall into the “Likely” category, make a case for yourself or your organization in the grant application (“I may not fit this criteria, but . . .”).
Students can apply for grants to receive funding for social impact internships and social impact experiences through the Ballard Center; however, please note that internships located in certain countries will be disqualified for funding if listed on BYU’s Travel Restrictions List with a red asterisk.
Any student seeking a grant to travel to a country that is marked with a red asterisk on the “Travels Restrictions List” CANNOT receive funding. Countries that are listed but do not have the asterisk need to go through a security approval process—which can take over six weeks after two additional Ballard Center forms are completed. These security forms need to be received from Todd Manwaring, director of the Ballard Center. Please note that going through the approval process does not guarantee that travel to those countries will be approved for funding.
How much is a typical grant?
Grant amounts vary based on need, project details, and other criteria. Grants are intended to provide reimbursement for travel expenses such as airfare and daily living costs. Please note, you will be asked in the application about other sources that you have pursued for funding, including family resources, before asking for a grant amount.
Can I receive funding if I am traveling to a BYU restricted country?
Any country that is marked with a red asterisk on the “Travels Restrictions List” CANNOT receive funding. Those countries that are listed but do not have the asterisk need to go through an approval process. Please note that going through the approval process does not guarantee that those countries will be approved for funding.
How often are grants reviewed?
Grant requests are normally reviewed once a month in Fall and Winter Semesters, less often in Spring and Summer Terms.
You can also contact us with any questions you may have prior to or after applying. We’d love to hear from you.