Special Projects

OPEN- Applications for the 2018-2019 school year are now open.

The Special Projects Fund is a source of funding for graduate student-initiated projects and other events of significant interest or value (e.g. academic & career development) to graduate students across campus. The GSA budget allocates a certain amount of money each year for such projects; the amount offered to any one project is limited to $1,000.

Please read the following instructions:

1). Application Submission

To apply, submit the Special Projects Funding Application Form along with a one-page proposal to the GSA Treasurer (gsatreasurer@ucdavis.edu). The proposal must outline the project, budget, what sources of funding you currently have, who the project is meant to target, and what benefits it provides to graduate students. Please include contact information for the project organizers.

Please note: applications and proposals are due at least six weeks prior to the event to allow adequate time for consideration by the GSA.

Please fill out the Special Projects Funding Application Form: .docx or special-projects-fund-application-form

2). Approval Process

The GSA Executive Council will meet to consider your proposal and, if necessary, gather additional information from you. The Executive Council will then present your project at the next GSA Assembly meeting, along with their recommendation as to whether the GSA should fund the project and in what amount. You will be informed of the meeting date and time. We strongly recommend that you attend and be prepared to give a brief statement about your project and answer any questions from the Assembly. The GSA Assembly will make the final decision as to whether to fund your project. If your project is approved, a follow-up survey to gather reimbursement information will be emailed to the listed contact.

3). Reimbursement of Expenses (Read before purchasing items!)

To make the reimbursement process more smooth, we strongly suggest that you ask your own department to pay for the event first, then let GSA supply your department’s account to fund it. If it is not possible with your department/graduate group, please try to only make one person do the purchase. (We have had an event with 5 different people purchasing items, and made the reimbursement process extremely complicated.)

The GSA office will reimburse you for expenses associated with your project up to the amount of your award. To be reimbursed, you must submit original itemized receipts to the GSA office coordinator in 253 South Silo. Additionally, you must submit: an attendance list, a flyer, an agenda, and itemized receipts (please retain original receipts) to gsaoffice@ucdavis.edu within 21 days of your event.

Currently Funded Special Projects

  • Community Economies Network Steering Committee Retreat
  • Food Justice Summit
  • Team Graduate School
  • Center for Neuroscience Neurofest
  • Immunology Monthly Meetup
  • Research and Development Conference
  • UC Davis Graduate Student Parent Experience Survey
  • Psychology Conference
  • R. Bryan Miller Symposium
  • Plant Science Symposium
  • Why Political Ecology Now?: A research and writing retreat
  • 12th Annual Graduate Student Symposium in Ecology
  • Annual Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry Winter Colloquium
  • The 6th Annual Symposium on Language Research at UC Davis
  • 9th Davis Math Conference
  • Microbiology Graduate Student Symposium
  • 7th Annual Native American Studies Graduate Student Symposium
  • SOMA: Seminar Outreach for Minority Advocacy
  • SuperFly Drosophila Research Seminar Series

Past Funded Special Projects


  • Student One Health
  • Historians without Borders, History without Limits” Interdisciplinary graduate conference
  • Graduate Student Symposium in Ecology
  • 8th Davis Math Conference
  • Graduate Diversity Orientation Program eXtension (GDOPx)
  • Transdisciplinary Listening Session “Intersectional Struggles in Ground-Up
    Development: Indigenous Farmworker Organizing in California and Grassroots Agroecology in Nicaragua”


  • “Historians without Borders, History without Limits” Interdisciplinary graduate conference
  • Plant Science Symposium
  • Graduate Student Symposium in Ecology
  • 7th Annual Davis Math Conference
  • Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry Winter Colloquium
  • Center for Neuroscience Brain Awareness Week Event
  • Psychology Conference 2017
  • Share Your Science Workshop
  • 6th Annual Native American Studies Graduate Student Symposium
    Currents of Resistance, Activism and Justice: Indigenous Responses to Neoliberalism



  • 5th Annual Davis Math Conference
  • GLOBE – GLOBAL Speakers
  • Ecology Interdisciplinary Symposium
  • Graduate Students of Color Mentorship Program
  • LASER – Interdisciplinary Arts and Science Speaker Series
  • 2015 Plant Breeding Symposium
  • 2015 Food Championship
  • Psychology Conference
  • Second Annual UC Davis Symposium on Language Research

Letter from Symposium on Language Research

The Cluster on Language Research received funding to support its second annual UC Davis Symposium on Language Research. The event was held on the UC Davis campus on Friday, May 22, 2015 and attracted 126 participants, including 36 papers from 9 different California universities (UC Davis, UC Berkeley, UC Santa Cruz, UC Irvine, University of the Pacific, Middlebury Institute of International Studies, SF State, CSU East Bay, CSU Long Beach). Approximately 25% of the attendees came from over 15 institutions other than UC Davis, which reflects the conscious decision to broaden the appeal of what was primarily a local conference last year.

More importantly, the success of this year’s Symposium makes clear how the Cluster on Language Research has forged a bridge among language researchers coming from radically distinct research traditions, goals, and methodologies. The presenters included graduate students and faculty from 7 different academic departments: Linguistics, Spanish, French, Education, TESOL/English, and Modern Languages and Literatures.  The three finalists for the most innovative conference presentation came from a linguistics (UC Davis), psychology (UC Berkeley), and education (UC Berkeley) background, respectively.

Nick Ellis, this year’s keynote speaker, was symbolic of this new synergism, coming himself from cognitive psychology with an interest first in dyslexia, aphasia, and first-language acquisition followed by his seminal work in second language acquisition.  His keynote lecture on the future of usage-based approaches to language and language acquisition held the audience spellbound.

With this in mind, the symposium was packed full of exciting learning opportunities for scholars not only at UC Davis but also in the language research community in California. Our strong support from sponsors on campus, including the GSA, has ensured that this second annual symposium surpassed the great success achieved at the inaugural symposium last year, thus raising the bar for future conferences related to language research. 

(Excerpted from a letter by Kimberly Morris & Emily Moline, Co-chairs of the Cluster on Language Research, 2014-15)

Fill out this form following approval by the GSA General Assembly.