Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois
CSFA Number: 601-00-0744
Agency Name
Board Of Higher Education (601)
Agency Contact
Bruce Bennett
Short Description
The Diversifying Higher Education Faculty in Illinois Program provides financial awards to eligible underrepresented students pursing graduate and professional degrees at Illinois public and private institutions of higher education. As a condition of their award, recipients agree to accept a teaching or staff position in an Illinois higher education institution or governing board, or an education-related position in a state agency.
Subject Area
Program Function
Enabling Legislation
PA 098-0678 Section 40
Objectives and Goals
To diversify the faculties and professional staffs at higher education institutions in the State of Illinois, with the major emphasis being on the diversification of faculty.
Types of Assistance
Project Grants
Uses and Restrictions
For the administration and distribution of grants (fellowships) to qualified students
Eligibility Requirements
Applicants must:
1 - be an Illinois resident as defined as received a baccalaureate degree from an accredited educational institution in Illinois OR received a baccalaureate degree an accredited educational institution outside of Illinois AND have lived in Illinois for a period of at least three years prior to applying for a grand AND is a registered voter in Illinois.
2 - be a member of a “Traditionally underrepresented minority group” meaning any of the minority groups designated in the Act which are represented in Illinois post-baccalaureate enrollment at a percentage rate less than the percentage of the minority group’s representation in the total Illinois population.
3 - possess and above average academic ability and be unconditionally admitted into a degree-granting program at the time of application.
4 - be pursuing a doctorate, terminal master’s, or master’s degree.
5 - demonstrate financial need.
6 - complete complete both the online eligibility registration and paper application with required attachments to be submitted the the attending institution's DFI representative.
Eligible Applicants
Application and Award Processing
The DFI selection process has two major phases: institutional and statewide. The applicant initiates the first phase by submitting an application packet to a DFI institution by the posted deadline. (The applicant must contact the institution he/she plans to attend to determine if there are internal application deadlines.)

Each campus will determine which applications to send forward to statewide selections committee.

In the second phase, a state selection committee, consisting of DFI Board Members, will review the qualified applications and select awardees.

The DFI Award is available for a maximum of four years:
• Master’s (2) years, Doctorate (2) years; or
• Doctorate (4) years

A Fellow can only receive two years of Master’s-level funding and two years of Doctorate-level funding, or four years of Doctorate-level funding. The DFI award is available for a maximum of four years.
Assistance Consideration
1. DFI applications will not be accepted without an online registration that determines initial eligibility.
2. The DFI application and required attachments must be submitted directly to the DFI Institutional Representative at the institution the applicant plans to attend* no later than the posted deadline or by the internal deadline set by the applicant’s institution.
3. Applications (or attachments) sent directly to the DFI Administrative Office in Springfield by the applicant will not be considered.
4. Applicants must respond to every item on the DFI Application Form.
5. Incomplete applications will not be considered; no exceptions.
6. Applicants should check with their DFI Institutional Representative for internal deadlines and any additional information on admission or application procedures.
*Applicants must be unconditionally admitted to the institution at the time of application.
Post Assistance Requirements
Upon graduation or separation from the DFI institution, an award recipient must agree to actively seek and accept a position only in Illinois, when offered, a teaching or non-teaching full-time appointment at an Illinois postsecondary educational institution, or accept a position as an employee of this state in an administrative, educational-related position equal to the number of years for which he or she receives the DFI fellowship. Students failing to fulfill this condition of the award shall be required to repay 20 percent of their cumulative award amount (subject to revision by the DFI Program Board).
Regulations, Guidelines, Literature
Statute: http://www.ibhe.org/Grants/RuleStatues/DFI_Statues.pdf

Administrative Rules: http://www.ibhe.org/Grants/RuleStatues/DFI_Rules.pdf
Funding By Fiscal Year
FY 2018 : $1,456,500
FY 2019 : $1,456,500
FY 2020 : $1,456,500
Federal Funding
Notice of Funding Opportunities
Agency IDGrantee NameStart DateEnd DateAmount
20DFI15University of Illinois at Chicago07/01/201906/30/2020351,000
20DFI16University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign07/01/201906/30/2020321,000
20DFI11Northern Illinois University07/01/201906/30/2020132,000
20DFI7Illinois State University07/01/201906/30/2020114,000
20DFI14University of Chicago07/01/201906/30/2020111,000