American Councils for International Education is pleased to announce the launch of Central Asia University Partnerships Program (UniCEN) grants.
Funded by the U.S. Embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, the Central Asia University Partnerships (UniCEN) program builds capacity for substantive international engagement between higher education institutions in the United States and Central Asia (Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan). UniCEN supports selected universities across Central Asia to achieve a practical, practicable understanding of the U.S. higher education system and how to engage successfully. The program emphasizes areas for partnership between the U.S. and Central Asian countries, particularly looking at economic sectors of mutual interest and supporting the development of respective workforces. UniCEN grants will be awarded to U.S. universities to establish partnerships or advance existing collaborations between faculty and administrators at U.S. and Uzbekistan higher education institutions. Administered by American Councils for International Education (American Councils), the grants will advance the following program goals:
- curriculum, teaching, and assessment methods for improved student outcomes
- faculty policies, practices, and administrative structure
- faculty research collaborations for society, economic, and workforce development
- student exchanges
U.S. university faculty members and administrators are eligible to apply for partnership awards.
Projects that advance current U.S.-Uzbekistan university connections or establish new
partnerships are encouraged. While projects may involve a consortium of two or more institutions in Uzbekistan, identify one key university partner in Section 4 of this application and define the involvement of the other institutions in the narrative.
Three types of UniCEN grants will be awarded to U.S. universities in the areas of:
▪ Faculty Small Grants (up to $5,000) to support U.S. faculty to teach discipline-specific courses (master classes) at universities in Uzbekistan to enhance pedagogy and curriculum in priority areas, including (but not limited to) tourism management, digital economy, archaeology, water resources, medicine, media and multimedia, IT, agriculture, business education, etc. Grant applications may comprise travel funding and stipend for short-term visits of 5-14 days. A total of five awards will be granted in this category.
▪ Partnership Seed Grants (up to $22,000) to support catalyzing additional relationships between U.S. international administrators and faculty with Uzbekistan counterparts.
Grant applications may comprise travel funding, conference fees, materials, and related expenses to support two-way exchanges of administrators, faculty, and/or students. A total of five awards will be granted in this category.
▪ Project Grants (up to $40,000) to support capacity building for long-term projects with broader economic and social impact (e.g., establishing a joint research center, overhauling a major or discipline, launching new exchange programs, internationalizing accreditation, building online and distance education). Grant applications may comprise travel funding, conference fees, materials, and related expenses to support two-way exchanges of administrators, faculty, and/or students. A total of one award will be granted in this category.
U.S. higher education institutions may submit more than one proposal, but no U.S. higher education institution will receive more than one award. Projects may involve a consortium of more than one Uzbek and/or other Central Asian institution. Awards are expected to begin in September 2020 and may be implemented through June 30, 2021.
Criteria for Evaluation American Councils will notify applicants on awards by July 1, 2020. American Councils will evaluate applications based on:
- Project concept (including the readiness of partners to engage virtually and use online tools
- Personnel (including experience and engagement in Uzbekistan or Central Asia;
- Impact and sustainability
The deadline for applications is 22 May 2020 05:00 PM Eastern Time.
Please use the following link to apply for the grant: https://ais.americancouncils.org/unicen
If you have questions, please contact Adrian Erlinger, Senior Program Manager, Innovation and Capacity Building at firstname.lastname@example.org and Ksenia Ivanenko, Senior Program Officer, University Partnerships at email@example.com.