Student Engagement

Information for Focus Funded Projects

Information for Students Who Receive Focus Funding

Congratulations on your award! There are several steps to the funding process and we are here to walk you through everything. The main things to remember are to read our e-mails, keep deadlines in your calendar, and try to stay on track with your timeline.

Step 1. Grant recipients will be contacted via e-mail to come to the Student Engagement Office to sign the Focus Grant Contract and the Campus Organizations Accounting Contract for Purchasing Card activation. The P-Card is what you will use to purchase your supplies.

Step 2. When you receive a copy of your contract, please note the deadlines and expectations.

Step 3. You will need to complete training online before COA will release your P-Card. You will receive an e-mail from them about how to access the training.

Step 4. When you receive your P-Card for first round grants (April deadline) you may begin purchasing supplies on July 1. If you would like to purchase before that date, contact us to see if we have funds to let you start spending early. For second round grants (October deadline) you may begin purchasing supplies as soon as you receive your P-Card. If you haven't received your card within a couple weeks after completing the training, please contact us.

Purchasing Supplies

You do not have to purchase exactly what is on your list of supplies or from the vendor listed in your application. Your projects may change along the way, or you may find a better deal, but you still have to stay within the guidelines of what can and cannot be purchased with Focus funds. (Look at the Focus Application Guidelines page for a refresher.) Items purchased that are not within the guidelines will not be approved and will be charged to your U-Bill. 
It is important that you not exceed your budgeted amount specified in your contract. If you have circumstances that require additional funds, you may request it by contacting Letitia Kenemer in advance of the purchase and if it is reasonable and there is extra funding available, the committee will likely approve it. However if spend over your grant amount without advance permission, the overage will be charged back to your U-Bill.

Progress Reports & Visual Reviews

Grant recipients and advisors must provide brief written progress reports by the deadlines noted below. You must upload both reports as PDF's into your Focus Cy-Box (where you uploaded your original application). 

The committee will contact you to schedule a time for a 5-10 minute in-person visual progress review in September (for Round 1 Spring applicants) and February (for Round 1 Spring and 2 Fall applicants), and they are usually held in the College of Design. Be prepared to bring examples of work showing significant progress related to the timeline from the application. In the February review, we will also ask students to bring a revised timeline for finishing and delivering artwork by the final deadline.

If reports are not completed or if the committee feels that the grant recipient is not making adequate progress toward completing the project after the review, the project may be terminated and the student will need to pay back any funds spent thus far. If the awardee leaves the University, the project will be terminated and the student will need to pay back any funds spent thus far.

Student Focus Progress Report

Reports are due September 10, 2023 and January 25, 2024 for Round 1 Spring Applicants.
Reports are due January 25, 2024 for Round 2 Fall Applicants.  

The following information should be included:
Grant Recipient Name
Title of Project
Grant Amount
Describe the progress you have made on your project. 
Do you anticipate changes in your final project based on your preliminary work?
Describe the contact you have had with your advisor regarding the project.
How much of your funding has been spent?

Advisor Focus Progress Report

Reports are due September 10, 2023 and January 25, 2024 for Round 1 Spring Applicants.
Reports are due January 25, 2024 for Round 2 Fall Applicants.  

Please keep these reports brief, as they are just an advisor check-in for the committee. Reports should be e-mailed to your student to upload in their Focus drop box. 
The following information should be included:

Advisor Name
Advisee Name
Briefly describe the contact you have had with your student regarding their Focus project.
Do you feel they are making adequate progress?
Do you believe your student will complete the project on time and within budget?

Visual Artwork Display

Artwork will be exhibited in the Memorial Union during late March/April unless viewing space is a special consideration. If exhibition in the Memorial Union isn’t possible, the artist must have an approved plan and space arrangements must be cleared, in writing, with the host venue.

All plans for displaying artwork must be approved by the Memorial Union Arts Coordinator by the first week of March and artwork must be delivered to the Memorial Union in ready-to-install condition during the designated drop off time. The Memorial Union reserves the right to refuse to display objects that are improperly prepared for display.

Objects loaned to the Memorial Union will remain in its possession for the entirety of the exhibit dates. Artwork must be picked up during the designated times following the close of the loan period. Unclaimed artwork will become property of the Memorial Union.

Performance Based Projects

If funding is received to support a performance,it must be scheduled no later than March 15 and if multiple performances are scheduled, at least one has to be free and open to the public. A publicity plan for performances will be e-mailed to you to complete. If it is possible to display something in the Gallery exhibit related to your project we would highly encourage you to do so. If it is a performance before the exhibit opens, it could be photo stills, promotional posters, a QR code to a recording of your music, etc. If it occurs after the exhibit opens, having a promotional poster on display will also help advertise your event. We can discuss ideas at the visual reviews.

We require a 4-5 minute excerpt from your performance at the reception in April. 

Writing Projects

Books, poems and writing exerpts can all be exhibited in the Gallery. We will work with you on the best way to show your work. We require a reading from your work at the receiption in April.

Apparel Projects

Designers will need to provide a dressform for the exhibit if possible. If you have issues securing one, please contact us so we can help. If you would like to have someone wear your garment during the reception we can make arrangments.

Project Completion and Delivery

The specific drop-off date and time (mid-March) will be shared by the Visual Review in February at the latest. No projects will be accepted after the drop-off date and time, but arrangements to deliver artwork early can be made in advance with Letitia Kenemer. Late deliveries will not be accepted – this is a hard deadline and there are no exceptions. Artists who do not complete their projects and/or complete projects but do not deliver on time will have funding revoked and will need to repay any grant funds that have been spent. 

If you are not prepared and have to cancel your performance, your funding will be revoked and you will need to repay any grant funds that have been spent.


A reception will be held in April where all participating artists and advisors will be recognized. We will highlight projects that are performanced-based, and occasionally have visual artists talk more about their projects. Please invite your friends and family to see what you have been working on!

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