The UCF Foundation in partnership with the Academic Health Sciences Center (AHSC) recently received a grant from the Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation. The donation is the first major programmatic gift to the AHSC since it was created in 2018 and will support the UCF Genius Innovation Challenge, a new initiative designed to promote synergy through interdisciplinary approaches and solutions. Up to $300,000 will be available through this call.

Located in Winter Park, the Genius Foundation was established in 1959 and supports the arts, education, and initiatives improving quality of life. The UCF Genius Innovation Challenge aligns with the foundation’s goals through its focus on an interprofessional approach, bringing together researchers, clinicians and students from various academic disciplines and professional fields to foster innovation and holistic healthcare. 

Each proposed project must be 1) interdisciplinary in nature, 2) advance the mission of the AHSC and, most importantly, 3) contribute to the future health of the people of Central Florida and beyond. The awards offered through the UCF Genius Innovation Challengewill enhance creative synergy between our collective programs, unite our strengths, and will present important opportunities to make significant impact on community health.

Award Criteria

  • Projects/ideas should be collaborative and interdisciplinary and involve at least two units of the AHSC (your own plus at least one partner).
  • Projects/ideas must advance the mission of the AHSC.
  • Projects/ideas must contribute to the future health of the people of Central Florida and beyond.
  • Applications will need to include a budget showing how the funds will be used.
    • All funds will need to be fully-used by July 30, 2022.
    • Funds can support: salaries, consultants, equipment, supplies.
    • Most projects should aim for a funding request in the amount of $25,000-$50,000 and higher amounts will be evaluated based on criteria and merit.


  • A final report will be due to the Elizabeth Morse Genius Foundation in early summer 2022.
  • Team leaders will present findings and impact from projects at an in-person Symposium in fall 2022.


  • The online application will open on August 9, 2021 and close at 11:59 pm on September 10, 2021.
  • The applications will be reviewed and evaluated by AHSC Council Leadership. Final decisions will be made by the Deans of the College of Health Professions and Sciences, College of Medicine and College of Nursing and Vice President for Student Health Services.
  • If a team is selected as the winner, the team leader will receive notification of the award.
  • 2021-2022 award winners will be announced and notified in early October 2021.
  • Funds will be disbursed in early October for teams to begin immediate implementation.
If you have specific questions, please contact: Katie Korkosz at or 407.823.1600