Center for Community Engagement

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Davis Projects for Peace?

Davis Projects for Peace is an initiative for all students at the Davis United World College Scholars
Program partner schools to design grassroots projects for the summer of 2014 — anywhere in the world — which promote peace and address the root causes of conflict among parties. We encourage applicants to use their creativity to design projects and employ innovative techniques for engaging project participants in ways that focus on conflict resolution, reconciliation, building understanding and breaking down barriers which cause conflict, and finding solutions for resolving conflict and maintaining peace. Through a competition on over 90 campuses, projects will be selected for funding at $10,000 each.

What do you mean by “projects for peace”?

We hope to encourage student initiative, innovation and entrepreneurship focusing on conflict prevention, resolution or reconciliation. Some of the most compelling projects to date have reflected one or more of the following characteristics: contributing to conflict prevention; ameliorating conditions leading to violence/conflict; looking for and building on shared attributes among differing peoples, races, ethnicities, tribes, clans, etc.; fostering diplomacy or otherwise contribute to advancing peace processes underway; promoting economic opportunity and entrepreneurship among those in post-conflict areas; finding creative ways to bring people on opposite sides of issues together, such as through art, sports, music or other techniques to promote a common humanity; developing leadership and mediation skills training for those in conflict or post-conflict societies; starting or leveraging initiatives, organizations (e.g. education, health) or infrastructure projects to build/rebuild community. In general, projects should be building blocks for a sustainable peace. The overall program is intended to be worldwide in scope and impact, but specific projects may be undertaken anywhere, including in the U.S.

Who is funding this and why?

Davis Projects for Peace was initially funded by Kathryn W. Davis, a lifelong internationalist and philanthropist (who earned a B.A. from Wellesley, an M.A. from Columbia, and a Ph.D. from the University of Geneva). She passed away recently at the age of 106 years old. She is the mother of Shelby M.C. Davis who funds the Davis UWC Scholars Program, which currently involves 90 American colleges and universities. Mrs. Davis' legacy will live on through the continuation of Projects for Peace in order to spark initiatives for building prospects for peace in the world. The Davis family and friends believe, like Mrs. Davis did that today’s youth — tomorrow’s leaders — ought to be challenged to formulate and test their own ideas.

Who is eligible to design a Project for Peace?

Undergraduate students at any of the Davis UWC Scholar partner schools (including seniors who
would complete their projects after graduation) are eligible — so long as the president of their institution has signed and returned the grant agreement form. While the schools included are restricted to those in the Davis UWC Scholars Program, all undergraduates (not just Davis UWC Scholars at those schools) are eligible. Groups of students from the same campus, as well as individual students, may submit proposals.

How does the funding for these projects work?

Davis philanthropy has committed $1 million to fund Davis Projects for Peace in 2014. While Davis funding per project is limited to $10,000, projects with larger budgets are welcome as is co-funding from other sources (such as other philanthropists, a college or university, foundation, NGO/PVO or students’ own fundraising).

How does a student (or group of students) make a proposal?

To be considered, a student (or group of students) must prepare a written statement which
describes the project (who, what, where, how) including expected outcomes and prospects for future impact (not to exceed two pages) as well as a budget (one separate page). Proposals should include pre-approval of all involved parties and organizations involved in the project. Read the full application instructions here.

How are these proposals submitted and judged?

Each involved campus has a designated official to coordinate the process on each campus. This
official, in ways s/he deems appropriate, will guide the internal campus procedures for: announcing and promoting the opportunity to students; organizing the selection committee to evaluate the proposals submitted; communicating results on a timely basis to the Davis UWC Scholars office; and distributing the awarded grant funds for the winning proposal(s) on campus. Final review and approval of all recommended proposals from individual campuses rests solely with the office of the Davis UWC Scholars Program which will then award grant funds to each school with winning project(s).  Amherst College will give preference to projects that are located in the Pioneer Valley or New England.  And, will give preference to projects that build upon previous work that the student has done.  The designated official at Amherst College to work directly with the Davis UWC Scholars office is Janet Bordwin Kannel, Program Assistant in the Center for Community Engagement. If you have any questions about this program please direct them to her at

How will the grants be awarded?

The intention is to fund 100 projects, with at least one at each of the Davis UWC Scholar schools.
Therefore, all involved schools are invited to select and submit one proposal for funding and one alternate proposal that might be funded as well. Final decisions on winning proposals are made by the Davis UWC Scholars Program office. Grants are made to Davis UWC Scholars Program partner schools upon assurance that the project proposed will, in fact, be undertaken during the summer of 2014.

What is required for each project’s final report?

Each funded project must submit a final report to the Davis UWC Scholars office by September 15,
2014. The final report is to be limited to two pages of narrative using the final report form for 2014 posted on the website. It also includes a separate one-page accounting of the funds expended. Students have the option of including up to 3 digital photos, attaching them to the end of their two-page final report. Final reports are submitted on disk to the Davis UWC office by the authorized campus contact. Reports will be posted on the program’s website for all to see and learn from.