John Steele Grant Recipients

The John Steele Grant supports and encourages new research or assessment in career planning and college recruiting. The recipient(s) will be awarded up to $2,000 and will present their results at the Midwest ACE 2026 Annual Conference. No previous research experience is required to apply. The application deadline is March 18, 2024. The recipient will be announce at Trends in Recruiting 2024.


Examples of relevant research or assessment include conducting a benchmarking survey of employers or college/university career centers, evaluating the effectiveness of a new recruiting or career services initiative, or researching the elements of an effective internship program. To be eligible, the principal researcher must be a current Midwest ACE member in good standing and the research or assessment must not yet be completed or conducted. Individuals can apply for this grant as co-collaborators, as collaboration across industries and/or universities.

The Professional Development Committee will evaluate applications and proposals based on the following criteria:

  1. Relevance and usefulness to Midwest ACE membership
  2. Innovation and originality
  3. Clarity of purpose and goals
  4. Quality and appropriateness of design
  5. Overall quality of the proposal

This is a two year research grant. The winner of the grant will be announced at the Annual Conference and research will be conducted until 2026, where the winner will present their findings at the 2026 Annual Conference.

To Submit an Application, you will need:

  • Name, Organization, Title, Contact Information (for all researchers)
  • Project Title
  • Purpose of the Project (500 words or less)
  • Research or Assessment Question(s)
  • Type of Project (Assessment, Qualitative Study, Quantitative Study, Action Research, Mixed Methods, Other)
  • General Methodology (500 words or less)
  • Total Budget
  • Project Start Date
  • Anticipated Completion Date
  • Funds Recipient
  • Optional upload for supplemental materials

Past Recipients:


Emily Sager
Beloit College
The Impact of Career Channels on Domestic Minority Student Demographic Groups


Stephen Roach
Purdue University - Center for Career Opportunities
Understanding the Effectiveness of Survey and Communications Tools

2016  Julia Panke-Makela
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Career Competency & Self-efficacy Development for Paraprofessional Student Employees in Career Services 
2015 Gaeun Seo
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 
Understanding the Experience of International Students in Job Search Groups
2011 Whirlpool University Relations Team
Jeff Beavers, Reagan Craven, Heidi Groulx, Brandon Stephens
Career Fair “Flock Mob”
2009 University of Cincinnati Career Development Center
Jim Novak (accepted Award on behalf of Linda Bates Parker)
The Viability & Efficacy of Transforming Credit-Bearing Career Courses to Distance Learning Formats
2008 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Scott V. Weston: Seek & Explore
2004 Baker College Online
Non-traditional Student Retention and the Influence of College Career Services
2003 St. Louis University
Employer Preferences and Expectations of Students during the Job Search Process