Community Project Fund

The Community Project Fund has been allocated and we are no longer accepting applications. We will make an announcement when the fund is accepting applications again.

The Sears think[box] Community Project Fund is supported by the generosity of The Burton D. Morgan Foundation. These funds support a diverse group of individual and team projects from community members.

The fund supports:

  • Northeast Ohio residents and their projects.

The fund does NOT support:

  • CWRU student or faculty projects. 


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  • The scope of the project must be technically feasible with realistic deliverables achievable before the reporting deadlines found below.
  • Funds are available for up to a maximum of $1,000 per project.
  • Award amounts will be determined by the review committee.
  • The funds are primarily intended to provide resources for materials, equipment, manufacturing costs, and other related expenses


Funds will NOT be awarded for any of the following:

  • Food, drinks, or entertainment
  • Stipends for project team members or other individuals
  • Contractors or consultants
  • Marketing

Reporting Requirements

Recipients must submit a final report which is due three months after submitting their signed agreement. Submit a Final Report >>

  • Final Reports must include:

    • A description of the project goals and progress to date
    • Photos, drawings, and/or renderings
    • A spreadsheet showing a summary of project expenses
    • Scans of all receipts indicated on the spreadsheet

Review Criteria

A committee will review all proposals using the criteria listed below. Applicants will be notified via email as to the status of their application.

  • SMART Goals: Has your team selected goals that are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound?

  • Technical Feasibility: Can your team realistically reach the goals you set out given the team's existing skillset?

  • Monetary Feasibility: Is the requested funding appropriate for the project goals?

  • Innovation / Functionality / Creativity: Does the project involve a creative aspect, a technically challenging or educational aspect, or a new idea or process? We’re looking for projects that will help you develop your professional and technical skill sets.

Review Committee

  • Ainsley Buckner, Prototype Engineering Manager
  • Ruth D'Emilia, Department Administrator
  • Mandeep Bansal, Design and Manufacturing Engineer
  • Richard Graham, Coordinator

Fund Administration

Receiving an award from the think[box] Community Project Fund provides a valuable learning and life-skills opportunity for Northeast Ohio residents to develop and experience a number of critical professional practices that include: project planning and management, budget ownership and management, fiscal responsibility, and professional reporting. Recipients are expected to keep accurate financial records, and a summary of transactions plus scanned receipts must be included in the final report.

Fund Disbursement

Recipients may receive funds in one of two ways:

  • Reimbursements - Itemized receipts must be submitted with the final report for reimbursement - receipts showing only the total purchase amount cannot be accepted. Eligible purchases will be reimbursed up to the amount of the award. Project materials purchased in the past six months may be reimbursed as long as it appears on the application and final report spreadsheets, an itemized receipt is provided in the final report, and the cost of the item(s) does not exceed 25% of total project expenditures.
  • think[box] Accounts - Funds may be placed into a think[box] Account. Please note that funds placed in a think[box] Account may only be used for material purchases at think[box].