Collaborative Community-Based Research Seed Grant

Collaborative Community-Based Research Seed Grant

The center offers a seed grant in the amount of $7,000 to support joint faculty-student-community research partnerships addressing a need articulated by the community organization. These grants may support the planning and development of new projects, the expansion of existing ones, or the evaluation of on-going or previously completed projects. 

The purposes of the grants are to foster faculty-student-community partnerships that: 

  • Result in measurable, positive impact in the South Bend area;
  • Reflect the investment of both faculty and community partner expertise in the local community; and
  • Offer students community-based learning opportunities that promote civic responsibility.

When the grant recipient is announced, the partnership will receive up to $6,000 to cover costs associated with the project, to be kept in the faculty partner's account. The remaining $1,000 will be similarly awarded within three years of the first part of the grant disbursement if the partnership can show: (1) evidence of the positive impact the partnership has had locally, and (2) a refereed publication, or other work considered of high merit in the faculty member’s field, or a presentation at a national or regional conference.


Proposal deadline: January 29, 2018

Community-Based Research Seed Grant Application Consultation 
Faculty, area community members, and students are encouraged to request a consultation with the grants administrator, Danielle Wood to assist them in the proposal development process. Consultations can provide an overview of grant requirements, tips on writing strong proposals, and/or feedback on your specific project.

2017 Ganey Seed Grant Recipients

Understanding and Investigating the Problem of Lead in St. Joseph County

Kathy Schuth (Near Northwest Neighborhood), Heidi Beidinger-Burnett (Eck Institute for Global Health), Lacy Ahern (Eck Institute for Global Health), Sue Taylor (Beacon Health), and Marya Lieberman (Chemistry and Biochemistry) Luis Galup (St. Joseph County Health Department)

Lead is a toxin commonly found in water, soil, and paint, and can affect the cognitive, motor and behavioral abilities of exposed children. Nationally, lead screening among children five and under is very low, and St. Joseph County is no exception. A census tract in the Near Northwest Neighborhood has been identified with the highest rates of elevated blood lead levels (EBLL) in the state of Indiana; in this neighborhood, 31% of the children tested from 2005–2015 had high levels of EBLL. Due to limited testing, however, this may be underrepresenting the scope of the problem. This project will address two research questions related to lead exposure in our community. The first question asks for an evidence-based epidemiologic profile of lead in St. Joseph County; the second searches for the sources of lead poisoning in the home environment.

The project will use mixed methods to answer the two research questions. Quantitative analysis of existing data will be used to develop an epidemiologic lead profile for the census tract. Community resource mapping will help inform plans for increased testing, treatment, and health education. Residential lead screening in 20-30 homes will test for paint, dust, soil and water. At-risk children will be tested by the Health Department for current lead levels. Notre Dame students will be trained to do home lead testing as well as data analysis and resource mapping. The information compiled during this project will be used to identify at-risk children and families and to develop both a short-term and a sustainable plan to address the lead problem in our community. Other outcomes include providing information that will equip the St. Joseph County Health Department for evidence-based program development, including outreach and education. This can serve as a model for response in the neighborhood, as well as the city and state.