Search This Site


We are no longer accepting applications for Bicentennial Awards.

Through the generous support of the Alumni Board of Trustees, this program has allowed University schools, units, departments, offices, foundations, and CIOs to directly contribute to the celebration of the UVA Bicentennial.


The Bicentennial Commission seeks proposals for projects that explore the University’s past, present, and/or future and contribute to the commemoration and celebration. Projects may include symposia or seminars, research, publications, events, exhibits, engagement activities, service activities, digital outreach, and other efforts that meet the criteria outlined.


Proposals should align with one or more critical areas of Bicentennial planning:

Engagement and Promotion

  • to engage, unify, and energize the University’s existing constituent groups of alumni, parents, and friends, and to develop appropriate strategies to reach currently overlooked audiences;
  • to generate new interest in UVA, Thomas Jefferson, and his fellow founders among groups and individuals with no prior connection to the University;
  • to conceive instruments of engagement that operate effectively on the local, national, and global levels;
  • to generate unprecedented public awareness of the University locally, nationally, and globally;
  • to pursue new ways of reaching the changing demographics of UVA’s alumni base;
  • to identify and express UVA’s distinguishing qualities as a means to differentiate UVA from its higher education peers.

Commemoration of our History

  • to explore and promote the historical elements of the Bicentennial, including UVA’s historical relationship with slavery;
  • to emphasize the connections between UVA’s founding and the founding of the American Republic;
  • to conceive celebratory activities that will recognize with appropriate fanfare the achievements of UVA’s past 200 years;
  • to explore opportunities for collaboration with members of the Presidential Precinct.

Envisioning the Future

  • to imagine and articulate the aspirational, forward-looking elements of the Bicentennial Celebration;
  • to consider forecasts for the future of higher education and to identify opportunities for UVA to occupy a unique position in that future;
  • to develop compelling ideas and narratives that eloquently express the University’s aspirations for its next 200 years;
  • to unite UVA’s entire global community in a shared vision for what the University will be at its Quadricentennial and to generate a groundswell of support that will give UVA powerful momentum entering its third century.

Levels of Awards

Level 1: Awards under $1,000

Level 2: Awards from $1,000 to $20,000

Awards at this level will cover a maximum of 2/3 of the cost of the proposed project. The submission will need to identify funding for the remaining 1/3 of costs; in-kind contributions may be counted toward the balance.

Awards larger than $20,000 may be considered for projects of transformative ambition that promise to contribute in significant ways to the University.

All applicable University policies and procedures must be followed.

Decisions will be based on how compelling the proposals are, as determined by the criteria above; on the justifications of budget and project feasibility; and on how well the project contributes to the overall mix of activities and projects of the Bicentennial.

Submission and Review Schedule

Level 1

Proposals will be accepted beginning February 1, 2017; review and awards will happen on a rolling basis. The final day to submit a Level 1 proposal is Friday, March 29, 2019. Those who submit for Level 1 awards can anticipate receiving a response within three weeks of submission.

Level 2                                                        

Round One: Submission deadline: April 28, 2017 | Award announcement: June 9, 2017

Round Two: Submission deadline: October 30, 2017 | Award announcement: December 15, 2017

Round Three: Submission deadline: January 29, February 5, 2018 | Award announcement: March 12, 2018

Eligible Applicants

University schools, units, departments, offices, foundations, and CIOs.


Recipients of funds will be expected to:

  1. submit an updated budget breakdown prior to receiving the award funds,
  2. provide a progress report to the Bicentennial Office every three months,
  3. work with the Assistant Director of the Bicentennial for Communications on communications plans, including social media outreach,
  4. include financial credit, and
  5. provide a summary report and final budget to the Bicentennial Office within 30 days of the conclusion of the project.

For questions contact