The Greater University Service Foundation awards grants to exceptional individuals in their pursuit of extraordinary small projects and research in the St. Louis region. There are three primary criteria for selection of recipients: the unique nature of proposed projects or research; lack of funding from other sources, and potential for future impact of projects and research.

Foundation grants are intended to enable people of outstanding talent to pursue projects and research that would not ordinarily be funded through other grant making and funding bodies. In keeping with this purpose, the Foundation awards grants directly to individuals rather than through institutions. Recipients may be writers, scientists, artists, social scientists, humanists, entrepreneurs or those in other fields and disciplines. Projects are embodied as “egoless” endeavors, where the focus is on the action and impact over the individual. This may manifest as anonymity, a humble attitude or in a multitude of other ways.

While nominees’ past achievements are considered, the originality, probability of success and potential scope of direct and indirect impact for individual research and projects is paramount. Indeed, it is the potential human impact that is most closely considered when deciding grant recipients.

Video from WU/City, a 2010 Foundation-supported art installation project that
engaged students to explore the hidden gems and needs of St. Louis.