Bucks-for-Brains Application


Background: The Bucks-for-Brains fund was established through a WVEPSCoR grant funded originally in 2009. The West Virginia State Legislature under recommendation from Governor Joe Manchin established a Research Trust Fund for West Virginia University and Marshall University with the provision that for every dollar accessed in the fund, WVU and Marshall would raise the same amount from private sources. After the establishment of the original funds ($60 million) for WVU and Marshall, the Governor noted the accumulation of interest on the account as both WVU and Marshall were struggling to raise funds to match the monies. The Governor charged WVEPSCoR with making the accumulating interest available to other institutions in the state under the same provision- that funds can only be distributed when the receiving institution has demonstrated an equivalent match from private sources. West Liberty University’s Department of Natural Science and Mathematics, Program of Biology, prepared a proposal for WVEPSCoR requesting access to $100,000 of the accumulated interest from the Research Trust Fund with the understanding of the requirement for a $100,000 match from private sources. The proposal outlined the use of the monies to fund undergraduate research stipends for students with outstanding research potential. West Liberty University was awarded the proposal and has been soliciting funds to establish the match. To date, enough monies have been raised to access part of the Research Trust Fund $100,000.

Guidelines for Applicants: The research stipend will be $3000 for the academic year and summer. Applicants must have >3.2 gpa and exhibit strong critical reasoning and research skills. Applicants must be freshmen, sophomore or junior majors in one of the following fields: Biology, Chemistry, or Math. Research may be performed with any faculty member in the Department of Natural Science and Mathematics. Applicants must already be accepted by the faculty member in question for a research project. Awardees will receive the stipend in set payments over the course of the year. All awardees will be required to present the findings of their research at a state or national meeting AND at the West Liberty University Student Research Competition (Spring of 2015). Any awardee not fulfilling their research obligations will lose the stipend for the rest of the year and NOT be eligible for any future awards.

Please copy the following application form into a word document, complete it, and attach all required documents. Completed applications must be submitted to the department secretary, Mrs. Klepack (208 Arnett Hall) by 4:00 pm on Friday, October 31, 2014. Applications will be reviewed and awards announced by mid-November 2014.


Bucks for Brains Application               2014

Name: ___________________________________ Major: ___________________________________
 Address: Year admitted to WLU: ______________________
 Circle one:Freshman       Sophomore       Junior
Phone: Projected Graduation date: __________________
Email:   Faculty Research Mentor:
Intended Occupation:  (Faculty member must provide letter ofrecommendation)
 GPA:  Academic Advisor:
 Science and Math courses completed (include grade for each or in progress notation): 





 Unofficial transcript attached? Yes or No  Letters of Recommendation requested? Yes orNo

(Please have letters sent directly to department




  • Please attach a copy of your unofficial transcripts.
  • Please attach a copy of your CV with a formal cover letter that addresses why you should be the recipient of this special award.
  • Please attach a description of your intended research project. Include a brief background that describes the potential impact of the research and places the work in context of society and society’s needs. Also delineate the objectives/aims of the intended research project within the description.
  • Please attach an essay answering the following:

“Why do you wish to work with ______ on the research project ______?”

Include how you feel the experience will help prepare you for your next educational step and what you hope to gain during the experience.