How to Apply for a Grant

1.     Contact the Office of FCR by phone or email to set up an appointment to discuss your research interests or planned grant proposal. Do this well before you intend to submit the proposal, so we can provide assistance with the following:

  1. Suggesting funding sources, if needed. We have access to several funding databases and maintain close relationships with funding agencies, so we are often aware when new opportunities arise.
  2. Reviewing historical records to see what Whitman's experience with similar proposals/funders has been in the past.
  3. Determining whether the proposal is in line with current College priorities and determining appropriate timing of proposal (some funding agencies may consider only one Whitman application at a time, while others have no limit).
  4. Initiating the necessary paperwork to proceed with a grant application and facilitating communication with appropriate administrative officials.
  5. Developing the proposal. We can provide up-to-date boilerplate information on the College, help you express your ideas in lay terms, and provide assistance with writing or editing.

2.     Contact the Provost and Dean of the Faculty: Before a grant proposal is submitted, a formal request to proceed must be submitted to and approved by the Provost and Dean of the Faculty. This can be accomplished by emailing the Provost. If the grant proposal (if approved), will require matching funds from the College (e.g., for building renovations, equipment maintenance contracts, staff support, course reduction), you will need to fill out the Matching Funds Request Form, in which you must include a budget request and a rationale indicating how this grant would serve to advance the academic mission of the College. Where appropriate, these proposals will be submitted to the Committee of Division Chairs for its review and recommendation.

3.     Proposal Development Form: Please fill out this form and submit it to the Office of Foundation & Corporate Relations at least one month before the proposal due date. This form will serve as a checklist to make sure you have followed the procedures necessary to submit a grant proposal from Whitman College, and will also help us understand how we can best help you with your proposal.

4.     Here are some things to think about as you are writing. Make sure to do these things early in the writing process, as approval will be required on the Proposal Development Form before you submit the grant application:

  1. Does the proposal involve animals, human subjects, or biohazards? If so, you will need to gain approval from the appropriate Whitman committee.
  2. Does the proposal involve purchase of new equipment, building renovations, or institutional matching funds? If so, you will need to gain approval from the Provost and Dean of Faculty (see #2 above).
  3. Does the proposal involve creation of new positions? If so, you will need to gain approval from the Provost and Dean of Faculty (see #2 above).
  4. Does the proposal involve extending sabbatical leave, release time, or course reductions? If so, you will need to gain approval from the Provost and Dean of Faculty (see #2 above).
  5. Are you seeking federal or government money? If so, you will need to work closely with Tana Park, Sponsored Programs Coordinator.
    1. Tana will help you develop your budget, providing guidance on summer salary, OPE, and indirect costs.
    2. If you are applying for any type of federal grant or fellowship, you will need to register with Fastlane or Grants.gov as early as possible in the process. Contact Tana for assistance with this.
    3. For federal grants submitted via Fastlane or Grants.gov, an Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR)-someone authorized to sign contracts on behalf of the College-must submit the application. Whitman's AORs are Peter Harvey and Walter Froese. You will need to work with Tana and Rachna to coordinate the submission and ensure that the proposal is submitted by the deadline. Be sure to give us adequate notice - at least two weeks - to make sure someone is available to submit the grant. Please do not wait until the last minute! (Note: faculty/staff can submit individual fellowships [e.g., NEH] on their own).
  6. Feel free to ask us if you have questions. We are happy to coordinate all of the details for you.