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Dean's Strategic Initiatives and Innovation Fund

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The Dean’s Strategic Initiatives & Innovation Fund (DSIIF) for the Fiscal year 2023 competitive cycle. We are is seeking proposals that are innovative, aspirational, and explicitly aligned with the College’s strategic plan.

MEZCOPH priority areas for funding:

  1. Expanding student experiential learning locally & globally
  2. Enhancing research capacity
  3. Innovation in Education
  4. Promoting growth and opportunities to generate new revenue for MEZCOPH
  5. Community Engagement
  6. Promoting diversity and inclusivity

Funding requests can range from $5,000 to $50,000 per project over 18 months. The initiative is expected to be financially sustainable through the generation of new resources or the reallocation of other resources after the DSIF funding period.

Download Excel Budget Template (.xlsx)


All Primary MEZCOPH employees (Faculty and Staff) and department heads/chairs/directors. Requests should be routed and endorsed by the appropriate department chairs/unit directors. Departments/Units are encouraged to collaborate where appropriate.

Weighted Evaluation Criteria

Requests will be evaluated against the following criteria:

  • Evidence that the request addresses the goals of the Fund and directly supports the College’s strategic plan, goals, and priorities (20%)
  • Evidence that the request promotes the College’s aspirations for institutional excellence, distinctiveness, and inclusivity (20%)
  • Evidence that the request promotes excellence in the host department and/or division and/or support unit (10%)
  • Likelihood of high impact or return on investment to the College, relative to other submissions (20%)
  • Feasibility of the business plan (practical timeline and budget) and funding sustainability plan (30%)

Submission and Deadline

We ask that applicants submit all requests via DSIIF Applications no later than 5:00PM on the Submission Deadline.

Cycle Open for Submission Submission Deadline Official Response By
Fall 2025 September 8, 2025 October 20, 2025 End of November

DSIF Proposal format

Download the DSIF Proposal Format as a pdf

Review Process

DSIF process graphic

All requests will initially be reviewed and categorized based on activity by the DSIF coordinator. Requests may be returned to the requestors if they are incomplete. Complete requests will be forwarded to the Review Committees for review. The Review Committees will be comprised of diverse individuals (Associate deans, faculty, students, and staff) with broad expertise. The Review Committees will evaluate proposals and prepare brief written comments relative to the evaluation criteria for each request, and the committees may ask the requestor for more information or proposal revisions. The Review Committees will then make funding and prioritization recommendations to the Dean.


Funding will vary depending upon the merit of the request and the availability of funds. All requests will receive a response.


To help us provide transparent reporting to MEZCOPH members on the funding allocation from the Dean’s Strategic Initiative and Innovation Fund, each funded project must deliver a short final report at the end of its funding period. The report must contain the following components:

  • How the funding was used, including project funding from other sources;
  • The actual versus expected outcomes, including strategic impacts and how they were measured; and,
  • Planned next steps or future work, including the sustainability of the project beyond the DSIF investment.

Multi-semester requests are required to submit semi-annual progress reports every 6 months. The reports may be shared with the Dean’s Council and center directors and will be included in our DSIF Annual Report.

The Office of the Dean will issue an annual report that describes the number of funding requests received and the number funded for each submission window, the amount expended from the Fund, a description of the projects and programs funded, and the amount received by each unit. The annual report of the Dean’s Strategic Initiative and Innovation Fund will be communicated through various internal channels and posted on the College’s website.

Questions? Please Contact

Lorraine Varela
Special Assistant to the Dean
(520) 626-7083

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