Rising Stars Grants Program

The GLAAD Rising Stars Grants Program was created to celebrate young people’s commitment to enhancing LGBTQ representation within their communities and culture at large.

Two grants are offered annually to support graduating college seniors and rising college seniors in their initiatives to enhance intersectional LGBTQ advocacy and representation.

Recipients of the grant receive a three-night accommodation for them and a guest to attend the Rising Stars Grant Luncheon and the 28th Annual GLAAD Media Awards in either Los Angeles or New York City.

Applications will be released February 24, 2017, and due March 13, 2017. Recipients will be announced March 17, 2017.

The Grants

GLAAD will award 2017 inaugural Rising Stars Grants to seniors graduating from the Campus Ambassador program, and rising senior Campus Ambassadors.

Rising Stars Young Professional Grant
Graduating Campus Ambassadors (current seniors) are eligible to receive a $5,000 prize awarded for their commitment to a project that enhances intersectional LGBTQ media advocacy and representation, post-graduation, as a young professional.

Rising Stars Rising Senior Grant
Rising seniors Campus Ambassadors (current juniors) are eligible to receive a $2,500 prize to go toward an initiative that enhances intersectional LGBTQ media advocacy and representation within their university.


Who can apply for the Rising Stars Grant?
The 2017 Rising Stars Grants* are only available to GLAAD Campus Ambassadors. *This criteria is subject to change for future awards
When are the applications due?
The 2017 Rising Stars Award application is due Monday, March 13, 2017 at 9am ET.
When will the recipients be announced?
The 2017 Rising Stars Award recipients will be announced Friday, March 17, 2017.
When will the awards be received?
Rising Stars Grant recipients will receive their awards at one of Rising Stars Awards luncheons. Recipients will attend the award luncheon in either Los Angeles on March 31, 2017 or in New York City on May 5, 2017.
How are the recipients selected?
A committee of GLAAD staff will select awardees based on the strength of the following criteria:
  • Proposed initiative positively affects marginalized communities, particularly LGBTQ people
  • Proposed initiative uses an intersectional approach to LGBTQ advocacy
  • Proposed initiative uses media advocacy to enhance representation for LGBTQ people
Why would you like to know my Demographic Information (gender identity, sexual identity, and racial identity, etc.)?
Even though giving us this information is purely on a voluntary basis, we would like this info in order to make sure we are reaching a wide and diverse population of potential entrants, especially within the LGBTQ community. NOTE: Providing or not providing us with this information will not in any way prejudice our decision-making/judging process.

Terms and Conditions for Rising Stars Grants

By applying for the 2017 Rising Star Grant, you agree to these terms:
•    Only students attending universities of the fifty (50) United States and District of Columbia who are at least eighteen (18) years of age at the time of application are eligible to apply.
•    All applicants must be currently enrolled as a full time students at an accredited college or university.
•    All applicants must be enrolled as either a junior or senior.
•    All applicants must be currently participating in GLAAD’s Campus Ambassador program (2016-2017).
•    Applicants are only eligible to apply for one grant. 
•    GLAAD reserves the right to change the grant programs at any time, including available grants, deadlines, requirements, award amounts or other program details.
•    Grant recipients are not to use scholarship funding in a way that runs opposition to GLAAD’s mission of advocating for the LGBTQ community.
•    Grant recipients are required to submit a current photo and submit a release granting GLAAD permission to use their photo on glaad.org and in other marketing communications.

•    In accepting a grant from GLAAD the applicant agrees to waive and release, GLAAD, its officers, associates and partner organizations from any and all liability, including but not limited to, any liability arising from the negligence or fault of the entities or persons released, for death, disability, personal injury, property damage, property theft, or actions of any kind which may occur to you during or after the grant is received, including during or after any travel undertaken as part of the grant

•    Officers, directors, employees and members of the selection committee of GLAAD and any parent, subsidiaries, affiliates, distributors, retailers, sales representatives, advertising and promotion agencies (all such individuals and entities collectively referred to herein as the “Entities”), are ineligible to apply.

•    The selection committee’s decision is final.

Attending the GLAAD Rising Stars Grant Luncheon and the GLAAD Media Awards:

•    If the grant recipient is under twenty-one (21) at the time of the GLAAD Media Awards, the grant recipient’s guest must be a parent or legal guardian.

•    If the grant recipient is over twenty one (21) at the time of the GLAAD Media Awards, their guest must be a minimum of eighteen (18) years of age or older, or if such travel companion is under the age of majority in his/her/their state of residence (a “minor”), the grant recipient must be such the minor’s parent or legal guardian, or travel with the written permission of such parent or legal guardian in form and substance acceptable to GLAAD its sole discretion.  

•    Grantee and his, her or their travel companion must travel together on the same itinerary and must possess all required travel documents, including visas and valid passports, if and as applicable, and comply with any applicable hotel check-in requirements, such as presentation of a major credit card.  All aspects of the travel portions of the grant must be conducted on such dates as determined by GLAAD in its sole discretion.  The dates of departure and return are subject to change at GLAAD’s sole discretion.  Airfare may not include government taxes, Passenger Facility Charge or September 11th Security Fee.  Airline tickets are non-refundable/non-transferable and are not valid for upgrades and/or frequent flyer miles.  Other travel restrictions and blackout dates may apply.  All airline tickets are subject to the vagaries of flight variation, work stoppages, and schedule or route changes.  GLAAD reserves the right to structure travel routes and select hotels in its sole discretion.  The round trip air transportation element for any travel begins and ends at the point of departure.  Room taxes and other hotel fees are not included and if applicable may be payable at the time of check-out by the guest.  A deposit or payment in advance, or presentation of a credit card by the grantee, may be required at the time of check-in at the hotel.  Any hotel cancellations or changes to hotel reservations after confirmation must be made with the hotel directly, and the grantee is solely responsible for any charges and/or fees arising from changes made directly with the hotel.  

•    In the event the Grantee and/or his, her, their travel companion/s engages in behavior that, as determined by GLAAD in its sole discretion, is obnoxious or threatening, illegal or that is intended to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass any other person, GLAAD reserves the right to terminate the trip or other applicable experience early, in whole or in part, and send the Grantee and/or his or her or their travel companion/s home with no further compensation.

•    All expenses and incidental travel costs not expressly stated in the description above, including but not limited to, ground transportation, meals, incidentals, passenger tariffs or duties, surcharges, airport fees, service charges or facility charges, personal charges at lodging, security fees, taxes, gratuity or other expenses are the sole responsibility of the grantee.  

•    In the event that the Event listed in the Grant description does not or cannot take place as scheduled or at all, for reasons including but not limited to scheduling conflicts, cancellations, postponement, an event of “Force Majeure”or for any other reason, then the remaining components, if any, of the event shall constitute full satisfaction of GLAAD’s obligation to the grantee, and no other or additional compensation will be awarded.