CIFS-IPP Project Proposal Submission for Members

As part of their program benefits, CIFS-IPP Members have the opportunity to submit a project proposal to be completed by a student enrolled in the CALS Master of Professional Studies (MPS) Program or a Food Science undergraduate major (typically enrolled in the Summer Research Scholars Program). Projects may be research or literature-based and should be able to be completed in approx. 10-weeks (by undergraduate students) or 6 – 12 months (by MPS students).

Submitting a Proposal

Members should contact the Managing Director, CIFS-IPP (CIFS-IPP) to share a general scope of their proposed project to determine if (i) a faculty member with the required expertise is available to oversee the project, (ii) a student with the appropriate background and interest can be identified, and (iii) the project can be completed within an appropriate time frame. If the project is interdisciplinary and/or falls outside the scope of Food Science, CIFS-IPP will work with the CALS Office of Professional Programs and Extended Learning to help target faculty and students in other majors (i.e., Global Development/International Agriculture, Natural Resources/Sustainable Systems, Horticulture, Plant Biology, Soil and Crop Sciences, Biological & Environmental Engineering, Plant Biology, Animal Science, Landscape Architecture, etc.).

If the above criteria can be met, the member company should complete a detailed CIFS-IPP Project Proposal form and submit it to CIFS-IPP. If applicable (for example, for any extraordinary project costs), CIFS-IPP will provide a project cost estimate within 7-10 business days of the form submission. Then, if the final proposal and associated costs are accepted by both parties, CIFS-IPP will work with the Cornell Office of Sponsored Program, student, faculty member, and member company to complete agreement forms, IP Assignments, NDAs, etc. as needed and to establish and manage a project timeline.

Current Recommended Submission Dates

March 1 for projects to be completed during summer (June-August) 2021 by undergraduates or during summer and fall 2021 by current MPS students.

We offer a rolling submission deadline; however, any accepted project must either (i) be completed during the company’s Membership year, or (ii) the company must pre-approve Membership renewal for the following year if the project will not be completed during the current Membership year.


If conduct of the proposed project requires access to the company's confidential information, we recommend execution of an NDA between the member company and Cornell. Confidential information may only be used by the Cornell faculty member and key teaching staff for supervision of the student's project

We additionally recommend execution of an NDA between the member company and student. Confidential information may only be used by the student for the project and may only be shared with the supervising faculty member and other students, if any, directly engaged in the project who are also subject to an NDA with the company

The expectation is that the student may reference the project and company’s support on resumes and in interviews, but not disclose sensitive information, in the future.

Intellectual Property Rights

To the extent that only routine teaching resources are used by the student to conduct the project, Cornell will disclaim an interest in the resulting IP.

Students are requested to sign an IP assignment to the company as a condition of having access to the company's confidential information and conducting the project.

Sample language is available on request.

Please contact Rajni Aneja, Managing Director, CIFS-IPP at ra283 [at] if you are interested in submitting a project proposal.