DePaul University Division of Mission and Ministry > Scholarships, Grants & Awards > Vincentian Endowment Fund > Discretionary VEF Grants

Discretionary Vincentian Endowment Fund Grants

​​​​Discretionary VEF Grants are for proposals up to $2,000.00. 

Discretionary VEF Grant applications are accepted throughout the Academic Year as long as funding lasts each year. If awarded, recipients will be able to use the dollars immediately if the application is approved.
Discretionary VEF Grants normally must be spent in full by June 30 on the Academic Year for which they are awarded. Unless arrangements are made at the point of application, any unused Discretionary VEF Grant dollars will be forfeit and rolled back into the Endowment after June 30 of the current Academic Year.

Discretionary VEF Grants are funded by spending directly out of the VEF Cost Center. Therefore, recipients will need to coordinate with the Division of Mission and Ministry to spend the dollars awarded to them and allocate them correctly. An online application form is required.

Current DMM Contact Person for VEF Discretionary Grants is:  Mark Laboe, Associate VP, Division of Mission and Ministry.

VEF Discretionary Grant funds for the 2024-2025 Academic/Fiscal are currently accepting online applications.  

All DePaul students, staff, and faculty who have a continuing relationship with the University are eligible to apply for a VEF Grant.

Students will need the support of a full-time staff or faculty member prior to applying in order to be considered for funding.

For staff and faculty, we will notify their supervisors at the time of the application being submitted and when we communicate final decisions

1.       September 1st

  • Applicants can apply online throughout the Academic Year
  • The online application can be found here.
  • Generally, within 2 weeks after the application is submitted, a decision will be communicated to the applicant.
  • A Budget Meeting may be requested by the Division of Mission and Ministry staff prior to a decision being made.
  • In most cases, at the time of a decision, the awardee will be able to use the dollars awarded immediately.
  • Funds must be spent prior to the end of the academic/fiscal year in which they are awarded.

2.      May 15th – Discretionary VEF Grant Application window closes (about 6 weeks prior to end of academic/fiscal year).

3.      June 30th – All Discretionary VEF Grant spending for the Academic Year must be finalized.

·         Applicant general information (name, email, etc.)

·         Applicant’s supervisor contact information

o    For Students, contact information for your sponsoring full-time staff or faculty member

·         Project Overview, which includes:

o    Project Name

o    Expected End Date

o    Identifying 1) the purpose of the proposal, 2) the audience, and 3) the aspects of DePaul’s Mission that the proposal addresses

·         Grant Proposal, which includes:

o    Proposal Abstract (up to 500 characters)

o    Proposal Narrative (up to 9,000 characters)

§  Narratives should consider one the following sets of questions:

§  What “problem” is this project attempting to solve?  Why does this “problem” need to be solved? How will the audience identified earlier in this application access, engage, or benefit from this solution? How is this solution connected to the aspects of DePaul’s Catholic, Vincentian Mission identified earlier in the application? How is this project unique from or building upon other attempts to solve this “problem?”

§  What program has the opportunity to be enhanced? Why should this program be enhanced? How will the audience identified earlier in this application benefit from this enhancement? How is this enhancement connected to the aspects of DePaul’s Catholic, Vincentian Mission that were identified earlier in the application? How is this project unique from or building upon other attempts to enhance this program?

§  What story needs to be told? Why does this story need to be told? How will the audience identified earlier in the application access, engage, or benefit from this story? How is this story connected to the aspects of DePaul’s Catholic, Vincentian Mission identified earlier in the application? How is this project unique from or building upon other attempts share this story?

§  Narratives should include a timeline of the development and implementation of the project.

o    Supplemental Documentation (up to 7 pages in a PDF format)

§  Examples of supplemental documentation are: appendices that support your proposal narrative, photographs or images that support your narrative, letters of support, a visual of the timeline of the project, or documentation of other funding for this project.

§  DO NOT include a CV or Resume in Supplemental Documentation. There is no need or requirement to submit a CV or Resume.

·         Budget Information, which includes

o    Providing a cost center in which the grant will be housed. Each grant will be given it's own Project number and will simply be housed in the Cost Center.  You may need to get approval from your department or area budget manager to provide this information.

o    Providing an overview on how the applicant plans on spending dollars and the rationale for those expenses (up to 1,000 characters)

o    Specifying the ways an applicant intends to spend VEF Dollars - you must refer to the Grant Budget Categories list here and provide:

Type of expense (such as student salary, supplies, honorariums, domestic travel, etc.)

Grant Budget Category (such as 520G or534G)

An appropriate Account Code that falls within the Grant Budget Category to which you will charge related expenses (such as 554900 for supplies)  

o    Naming other sources of funding that have been secured for this project

o    Naming other sources of funding that are pending for this project

·         Acknowledgement of the Terms and Conditions

·         Discretionary VEF Grants cannot be used to pay for:

o   Monetary payments to the Project Director (including student applicants)

o   Monetary payments to DePaul Employees (FT or PT, Faculty or Staff)

o   Scholarships for students tuition charges or fees

o   Study Abroad expenses for participating students or faculty/staff leading the experiences

o   Donations to a third party organization

·         Discretionary VEF Grants can be used to pay Student Employees. This will likely push the timeline for accessing funds back at least 2-3 additional weeks (4-6 weeks total from time of application). This will require coordination with an applicant’s local Department to hire the student employees through the Office of Student Employment. Students cannot begin working on the VEF Grant project until they are hired as a student employee with Office of Student Employment/Human Resources.

·         Funding for food can be requested in Discretionary VEF grants, but not in excess of $500. If the VEF decides to partially fund a Grant application, funding for food will be the first item cut from a proposal.

·         Project Directors who seek funds to undertake case studies or site visits, particularly if distant travel is involved, must provide a theoretical framework or other justification for the number and location of sites.

·         If a proposed project requires release time, special facilities, or cost-sharing by a department or college, the project director must secure a written endorsement from the appropriate chairperson/dean/director prior to submitting a proposal. This endorsement can be submitted as part of the “Supplemental Documentation” section of the application. As an alternative, directors may request contingent funding from the endowment for a project that is awaiting internal or external support. An explanation of future funding options should be included in the application.

·         Project Directors who seek funds to administer a survey or conduct interviews must submit a draft questionnaire or sample interview protocol as supplementary material. Without such documentation, the Endowment Board will consider funding only the design and pre-testing portion of a survey project. For all projects involving human subject research, including for example surveys and interviews, Project Directors must follow university policies for human subject research approval. For more information, contact the Office of Research Services’ Research Protections section.

1.       Funds awarded by the Vincentian Endowment Board may be expended only for the purposes stated in accepted proposals, although Project Directors may exercise reasonable discretion in reallocating dollars among approved budget categories. Unless otherwise agreed, any changes need to be coordinated with the Division of Mission and Ministry.

2.       Project Directors will be the responsible individual for managing the budget for their VEF Grants. Payments for their VEF grants will need to be coordinated with Michael Van Dorpe in the Division of Mission and Ministry.

3.       Personal reimbursements of any type for the Project Director must follow the guidelines contained in the university’s Employee and University Guests Reimbursement policy.

4.       Project Directors are responsible for complying with all relevant laws and regulations relating to the activities funded by the grant.

5.       Equipment and other durable items purchased with funds from a grant become the property of DePaul University, but ordinarily may be retained for further on-campus use by the Project Director. These items should be clearly identified in the grant proposal.

6.       Grant funds are to be expended within the timeline that an award is granted, unless otherwise stated through an extension request. If, for good reason, an approved project cannot reasonably be completed within the original grant period the Project Director may petition the VEF Board Chair to consider a limited extension of the funding period.

7.       For Discretionary VEF Grants, all expenses must be completed by June 30 of the fiscal/academic year in which they are awarded, unless alternative arrangements are made at the time of the application. Any unused funds will return to the Vincentian Endowment Fund and be forfeited if not spent by June 30th.  

8.       Within thirty days after completing the funded portion of a project, the Project Director is required to submit a final written report containing a narrative and financial account of what was accomplished with grant funds.

9.       Failure to submit a final report will disqualify the Project Director from any future consideration for VEF funding. In addition, the appropriate dean or department will be notified of the Project Director’s non-compliance and disqualification.

10.   The Endowment Board reserves the rights to monitor and conduct an evaluation of all activities funded by the grant and to audit all grant-funded expenses.

11.   Failure to adhere to the university’s policies and procedures governing the expenditure of grant funds will result in a report of non-compliance to the appropriate dean or department and the repayment of misspent funds by the college/school/department to the Endowment Board.

12.   A notation, such as a footnote or an acknowledgment, should appear on all project publicity indicating that the project was funded, or assisted, by a grant from the Vincentian Endowment Fund of DePaul University. All service projects should also acknowledge VEF funding.