Break Travel and Research Grants for Sophomores and Juniors


The Break Travel and Research Grant provides seed funding for educational and research projects in European studies. Open to juniors and sophomores, the grant is intended to support well-focused, short-term exploratory trips conducted over fall, winter, or spring break so that students can take advantage of experiences and resources unavailable to them at Notre Dame. The Institute has recently launched new grant research priorities. Students considering applying are encouraged to familiarize themselves with this new initiative.


Fall Break (Deadline: September 16, 2019)
Christmas Break (Deadline: November 4, 2019)
Spring Break (Deadline: February 3, 2020)

Maximum Award

$2500. Funds are typically paid as a one-time sum.

Number of Awards

Multiple. The exact number of grants awarded per year will depend on merit and available funds.


Applicants must be enrolled as a sophomore or junior at the University of Notre Dame and scheduled to return the following semester.  Please read all guidelines before applying for the grant.

For guidance about student grants, you are encouraged to contact:

Anna Dolezal
Student Programs Assistant Manager 
Minor in European Studies & Nanovic Grant Programs

Office: 1060 Nanovic Hall
Telephone: 574-631-8326


How to Apply

Please familiarize yourself with our full guidelines listed below before logging into the application.   


Application Guidelines

We recommend that you collect all the necessary materials before logging into the application. You will receive instruction on how to upload materials during the application process.

A complete application consists of the following distinct parts:

Student Portion (due by 11:59 p.m. on the deadline day)
• a two- to three-page project description (11 point sans serif font, 1.5 line spacing, no kerning, one-inch margins) 
• a detailed budget statement using the Nanovic Budget Template
• a current curriculum vitae or résumé

Faculty Portion (due within 48 hours of the deadline)
• a completed evaluation form
• a letter of recommendation

The project description should include the project’s goal, rationale, connection to course of study or professional aspiration, work plan and/or methods, and schedule/itinerary. Students need to clearly articulate the project's connection to Europe and European Studies.

The budget statement must use the Nanovic Budget Template and should detail the project’s travel and research costs in US dollars (USD). Budgets should also list the sources used to determine costs and include any exchange rates (if used in calculation).  Budgets must state the names and amounts of other funding already obtained or sought for the project. Receiving partial funding from other Notre Dame offices can increase the likelihood of success. The grant funds may not be used toward the purchase of materials or toward payment on a rental car. Upon return, students will be expected to produce scans for all lodging and flight receipts as part of the reporting process. Expenses not approved in the original grant (including extension of travel dates) are the student's responsibility and any unused grant funds must be reimbursed to the Nanovic Institute. Students are encouraged to meet with the student coordinator to receive important feedback on the budget prior to submission.

The letter of recommendation and evaluation form should be from a faculty member at Notre Dame who is familiar with the student’s academic work and who has agreed to serve as an advisor for the project. An effective faculty letter will explicitly reflect upon the viability of the specific project. Faculty letters that do not evince a familiarity with the student's proposal will disadvantage the student's chances for receiving funding from the Nanovic. The faculty member will be prompted by the system after you have completed the student portion of the application form.  You will be notified by email when each faculty reference has completed their portion of the form. 

A complete student portion of the application must be submitted to the online application form no later than 11:59pm on the deadline day. Letters of recommendation may be submitted up to two days past the grant deadline day, and may be submitted to the Student Coordinator of the Nanovic Institute directly, if desired.

Failure to submit all required materials promptly may result in the application being excluded from consideration. Complete applications will be considered by a committee, and decisions will be announced in writing within three weeks of the submission deadline. Please note that application materials will not be returned.  It is our policy that the student waives the right to view all recommendation letter(s) unless permission is expressly denied by email to the Nanovic Institute.  Please send a separate email to the Student Coordinator or Director Undergraduate Studies of the Nanovic Institute.

Terms & Conditions:  Grant recipients are required to obtain the proper permissions for international travel from Notre Dame International prior to payment of awarded funds. Once awarded, the funding must be used to conduct the project as proposed in the application (to the best of the recipient’s ability).  Funded research trips must be completed by the end of the relevant break. Nanovic-sponsored travel may not interfere with class attendance or completion of final exams as scheduled without receiving express permission from faculty in advance.

Combined funding from this grant and other sources may not exceed the project’s total budget, and applicants must promptly inform the Nanovic Institute of additional funding received at any point from application submission through completion of the trip.  Recipients must return any paid funds if they cancel the trip and must repay any nonrefundable expenses incurred by the Nanovic Institute (i.e. airfare directly paid) if cancellation is not due to documented illness, bereavement, or another justifying circumstance.

After conducting the project, grant recipients must provide the Nanovic Institute with reporting materials according to guidelines supplied in the grant packet, including scans of all flight and lodging receipts pertaining to the trip.

Research Involving Human Subjects – Institutional Review Board

Undergraduate students engaged in human subjects research (i.e., interaction with a living person or private information from existing data, documents, records or diagnostic specimens) must have their projects approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) and pass the internet based training modules on the protection of human subjects. Review deadlines, submission process, and information about IRB education and training may be found on the Notre Dame Research website.

Questions concerning whether your research qualifies as human subject research should be directed to the Notre Dame Research at 631-1461 or

Student Spotlight

How the Program of Liberal Studies helped McKenna Cassidy expand her mind, strengthen her faith, and find a career path she loves 

The Program of Liberal Studies’ motto — Learn what it means to be human — is a phrase that Notre Dame senior McKenna Cassidy has taken to heart. She grappled with big ideas in her Arts and Letters courses, traveled to...
Read More