MES Thesis Fund

The MES Thesis Research Fund provides financial support to MES thesis students.

About the MES Thesis Fund


The Thesis Research Fund provides MES students financial support for materials required for the successful completion of their thesis research. Research funds are made available through a joint fund between MES and The Evergreen State College Foundation. 

We will have a Q&A at the first Thesis Workshop on January 10th so that students interested in applying for this resource can ask questions about the process and requirements.


The Thesis Research Fund is intended to reduce the financial burden of completing the MES thesis requirement by reimbursing students for expenses that are necessary for successful completion of thesis research.

The Fund is not intended to support expenses related to professional development, such as conference registration or travel, even if you are presenting your thesis research. See the Thesis Funding page to learn more about opportunities for professional development support.

Requests of up to $1000 will be considered. However, we expect most awards to be closer to $250-500 and we may grant partial awards to distribute research funds to more students. In addition, we recommend listing the full costs of your proposed research (i.e. above $1000, if applicable) so we can help you find other potential funding sources. In some past years we have funded thesis projects above the $1000 limit when funds are available, and the expenses are justified.


To be eligible for funding, applicants must be active MES students who have successfully completed the final core class, Case Studies and Thesis Design by the December 2022 deadline.

Reimbursable expenses include, but are not limited to: laboratory supplies, sample testing at off-campus labs, postage, tools and equipment, mileage expenses or other travel needs directly in service of collecting data.


Complete applications should be submitted electronically to no later than 5pm on Friday, January 13, 2023. Late submissions will not be considered.

The review committee will assess all submissions and provide applicants with funding decisions and award details no later than 5pm on Friday, January 27, 2023.

Funds must be spent within the academic year they are awarded.

How to Apply

A request is made by submitting the following materials. Incomplete submissions will not be reviewed.  

  • One-page cover letter that includes your expected quarter of graduation, a summary of your thesis research, and your funding request (total amount and what it will be used for). See this example cover letter for an idea of what the committee is looking for.
  • A copy of your complete and approved Thesis Prospectus. Your answer to Q11 about your budget should include all estimated costs of your thesis, not just the costs you are requesting funding for here. In your Prospectus please indicate any existing sources of funding for the estimated costs that you list in Q11.
  • An itemized budget that sufficiently details the specific expenses for which reimbursement will be sought, for reviewers to determine if those expenses are reasonable and consistent with the intent of the fund and College policies. The budget should be submitted as an Excel spreadsheet, with the total dollar amount indicated.  Please use the following categories:
    • Travel. This may include mileage in a personal vehicle for driving to/from study sites to collect data, or to conduct in-person interviews. If you are collecting data in a more distant location one round-trip airfare will be considered.  Mileage to/from the Evergreen campus, even if to process or analyze lab samples, cannot be included.
    • Materials/Supplies. These are typically items that you buy multiples of, e.g. lab supplies, flagging or notebooks, other field supplies, sample testing, postage for mailed surveys (or to send samples off), printing costs (of surveys or other materials needed for research, not the thesis itself).
    • Equipment. These are typically one-time purchases, e.g. of an instrument or tool necessary for data collection, or of specialized computer software.  Computer hardware (e.g. a new laptop) should not be requested.
    • Other. If you have specific expenses that aren’t covered in the above categories. Tuition cannot covered by this fund.
  • A Budget Justification that, for each category, briefly explains why you are requesting funding for the specific expenses you list, and how the funding will contribute to the success of your thesis research. Please indicate (at the end) if you have any pending funding requests that would potentially apply to the costs you are requesting funding for here.
  • A completed MES Thesis Fund application checklist.