December 2010

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December 2010

News & Notices

Fellowships Available to Members

Rich Dunham Co-Chair, Grants & Fellowship Committee

Robert Gerlach and his wife, Kim, were on hand at the 2003 Stage Expo in Minneapolis demonstrating his project results from funding provided via USITT’s Grants & Fellowship program.

Photo/Courtesy Robert Gerlach

One benefit USITT offers members is funding for projects that support research in a broad variety of areas within the entertainment industry. Project grants are offered in even years, and fellowship support is available in odd-numbered years.

The application deadline for the 2011-12 Fellowship Awards is January 10, 2011. Information on the process and applications are available here.

Support for fellowships and grants is in keeping with one of the fundamental missions of the Institute: to develop and disseminate technological knowledge or innovations and promote research within the profession. Through the financial commitments of trail-blazers like Edward Kook and many individuals and corporations, plus additional support from USITT’s operating budget, funds have been designated to continue this important work.

Once applications are received, the Grants & Fellowship Committee reviews them and makes recommendations to the Board of Directors for final action. Fellowship awards are usually related to funding that an individual or team will use to complete research on a specific area of interest within the design/technology fields of the entertainment industry.

The money USITT makes available for these awards is significant, and has been as much as $10,000 for a major undertaking. In many cases, this is enough to provide sole funding adequate for completing a grant or fellowship project.

Typically, the committee recommends several different projects for support each year. USITT awards also have proven valuable in providing the seed funding that allows recipients to find matching funds from other areas. This year, USITT has awarded nearly $20,000 in a variety of grants.

In return, a significant requirement award recipients must fulfill is to complete the projects/research within the designated time frame of the grant, and sharing the results with the membership and industry.

This is done through presentations at the Annual Conference, or Stage Expo, or through articles published in TD&T. Those with questions can contact either Tim Kelly ( or Rich Dunham ( about the fellowships or application process.