New WSU TCI Grants Boost Faculty IDEA Engagement

PULLMAN, Wash.—Washington State University’s commitment to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access (IDEA) is taking another step forward with the announcement of new Transformational Change Initiative (TCI) grants now available to faculty.

“Applications are open through April 4 for these latest innovative awards from the Provost’s Office,” said Bill Davis, interim vice provost for academic engagement and student achievement.

“We’re enthusiastic about the TCI IDEA grants because they are available to a wide range of instructors across the WSU system, the projects will focus on innovation in teaching and learning, and many will be underway as early as this summer.”

Erika Offerdahl, professor, associate director of undergraduate education in the School of Molecular Biosciences, and WSU’s new TCI director, will administer the grants.

“The Transformational Change Initiative focuses on student success, and in line with that there is keen interest in building capacity for IDEA across all of WSU,” said Offerdahl.

“The new grants will help us accomplish that by providing incentives for faculty not already involved in IDEA or by recognizing and expanding the efforts of faculty already engaged in IDEA. The benefits of the grants to, and impact on, students will be tremendous and swift.”

These grants also join several recent key WSU priorities and commitments in the provost’s office that promote IDEA, such as a cluster hire program to add faculty members whose teaching and scholarship focuses on equity, and establishment of two new positions—the associate vice provost for equity and inclusive excellence and the special assistant to the provost for inclusive excellence. 

RFP, Application Form Posted Online

Davis said the TCI IDEA grants will fund a broad range of collaborations and projects of varying and unique scope. Teams of two or more could include graduate students but must have at least one faculty member. Awards can range from $500 to $5,000 and projects could be interdepartmental or intercampus. They could take place this summer and/or fall, but must be completed by Dec. 15 of this year, with impact reports due in spring 2023.

“We invite projects that foster conversation, reflection, insight, and understanding of IDEA within the WSU community.  Ones that support interactions between WSU campuses and the surrounding community. And those that generate materials and resources that advance the university’s equity work in all teaching and learning contexts.”

The TCI IDEA grant’s request-for-proposal is online and features complete details about the grant as well as examples of projects.

Akin to Smith Teaching and Learning grants, but different

Davis said online information and diagrams help to clarify differences between another IDEA grant type that is available for 2022-2023—the Smith Teaching and Learning grant. That program was established through the Samuel H. and Patricia W. Smith Teaching and Learning Endowment, begun in 2000 when WSU President Smith retired.  The differences between the Smith grant and the new TCI IDEA grant programs are mainly in the areas of applicant eligibility, project duration, deliverables, and project types.

“While these grant programs may look similar upon a cursory glance, there are distinct requirements and key differences between the two. Faculty should carefully consider which grant aligns with their ideas for a project to transform the student educational experience at WSU.”

Smith grant applications have a March 14 deadline, three weeks earlier than those for the TCI IDEA grants.

Media contacts:

William B. Davis, WSU Interim Vice Provost for Academic Engagement and Student Achievement, 509-335-4930,

Erika Offerdahl, TCI Director and IDEA grant administrator, 509-335-8258,

Beverly Makhani, Communications Manager, DAESA, 509-432-3430,

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