Sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Research, the SPARC Graduate Fellowship is a merit-based award of up to $5,000 designed to ignite research and creative excellence across all disciplines at USC. Students who apply for a SPARC award must write a grant proposal and attend a required application workshop. In addition the helping students apply for a SPARC grant, the workshop equips students with the background necessary to seek national fellowship awards from the federal government and private foundations.
The USC Postdoctoral Association was formed to connect postdoctoral fellows from every discipline, and provide opportunities for them to share their experiences and learn from faculty and other mentors. They regularly host professional development events which are open to graduate students, including a recent workshop, Grant Writing: The Secret to Success.
In the fall of 2014, the Office of the Vice President for Research will begin offering grant writing workshops tailored specifically for graduate students. These workshops will provide a general overview of grant writing, including the latest procedures and regulations of the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health, basic proposal writing skills, and other pertinent topics.
The Office of Fellowships and Scholar Programs specializes in giving students advice on all aspects of the application and interview processes for national competitions. Some of the services they offer include: coordinating faculty nominations for eligible students, hosting national fellowship workshops featuring previous winners and faculty experts, and offering one-on-one advisement and providing feedback on personal statements.