WRRI Funding Application Tip

Letters of Support

When sponsoring faculty write letters of support for a student’s grant application, the letter should demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the student and indicate confidence in the student’s specific abilities. In areas where the student may be lacking, it’s not always a negative to identify these learning opportunities. Consider using the letter to address a plan whereby the sponsoring faculty member, their lab, or collaborators would help the student gain the necessary skills or knowledge to complete the proposed research.

Graduate Student RFP – OPEN

RFP Issue Date: Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018
Proposal Due Date: Monday, Nov. 12, 2018 at 5 p.m.

NC WRRI and North Carolina Sea Grant announce a joint competitive funding opportunity for full time graduate students at North Carolina’s colleges and universities. Highlights of this funding opportunity include an emphasis on diversity within applicants and in the areas where research is to be targeted.

Recognizing that some students and faculty have historically been underserved and under-targeted with research opportunities, and that some students and faculty are underrepresented in the sciences, we strongly encourage submissions by and/or collaborative partnerships with one or more of the following:

  • African American, Hispanic and Native American students and African American, Hispanic and Native American sponsoring faculty
  • Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
  • Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs)

Furthermore, recognizing that some communities and geographical areas are underserved and often stand to gain significantly from meaningful applied research, we strongly encourage research projects that engage underserved communities, rural communities, communities of color, or low- or fixed-income communities.

Proposals may address research questions and methods in the fields of social science, education, communications, natural science, engineering, economics or policy, or a combination of these disciplines. We encourage proposals that include meaningful public engagement, public participation, or collaboration with members of the communities where research is to take place.

The full RFP with application instructions is below.

For questions, please contact John Fear at 919-515-9104 or Nicole Wilkinson at 919-513-1216.

USGS 104(G) Grants

The National Institutes for Water Resources (NIWR) and U.S. Geological Survey award grants annually under the USGS Section 104(G) Competitive Grants Program. The 104g process has changed to a pre-proposal process (see RFP link below), where the PI’s will submit their pre-proposals to the Institute and then get an invitation to submit a full proposal based on national peer review of pre-proposals. Information about the previous (2018) RFP can be found here. The next 104(G) RFP is expected to be released between December 2018-January 2019.

USGS-WRRI 104(b) Grants

For North Carolina Faculty and Graduate Students

  • RFP Issue Date: There will be no faculty 104(b) RFP issued in 2018 for funds for FY19. The next joint faculty-student 104(b) RFP will be issued in spring 2019 for funding in FY20.
  • Proposal Due Date: TBD
  • Optional RFP info sessions will be scheduled
  • Click here to view previous RFP

WRRI issues it’s annual RFP for faculty pre-proposals and student full proposals for the FY 2017-2018 Competitive Grants Program. This RFP is sponsored by WRRI and the USGS 104(b) program.

Faculty pre-proposals may be submitted for either 1- or 2-year projects. The maximum award for a 2-year project is $120,000, with a $60,000 annual limit. The maximum award for a 1-year project is $60,000.

Full proposals for student research may be submitted for 1-year projects only. The maximum award for a 1-year student project is $10,000.

The starting date for projects accepted for partial/full USGS funding is March 1, 2018. Projects fully funded by non-federal funds can start as late as June 30, 2018.

Please download the RFP above for details. Informational webinars will be held on May 1st and May 4th from 9:30-10:30 a.m. To learn more about WRRI, this RFP and to ask questions, sign up to join one of these webinars.

For additional questions, please contact John Fear (919-515-9104) or Nicole Wilkinson (919-513-1216).


Information concerning the RFP for the competitive NIWR (Section 104, WRRA) grant funded by the Institute for Water Resources & USACE can be found here.  Please note, the RFP Priorities (pages 5 & 6) have been modified and expanded.

The deadline for proposal submissions is September 1, 2016.


Researchers interested in receiving funding from the Urban Water Consortium and/or Stormwater Group are encouraged to review their research priorities. Researchers can submit proposals to the WRRI annual call for proposals and those of relevance will be directed to the UWC or SWG for consideration. Researchers wishing to present a research idea to these groups either informally, or formally but outside of the annual call for proposals, may contact Nicole Wilkinson or John Fear of WRRI, or one of the groups’ voting representatives.


WRRI occasionally offers mini-grant opportunities, often in partnership with NC Sea Grant. There is not currently a call for proposals for mini-grants.