Higher Education Grants
Grants for higher education colleges and universities
Looking for grants to fund educational or research programs at a college or university in the United States? The Instrumentl team has compiled a few sample grants to get you headed in the right direction.
Read more about each grant below or start a 14-day free trial to see all higher education grants recommended for your specific institution and programs.
It is the responsibility of the Charitable Donations Committee (CDC) to make recommendations for donating directly from the Company. The members of the Committee are appointed by the Company's Management Committee and are authorized to make donations in accordance with corporate policy and guidelines.
The Company’s objective is to improve the quality of life where we live, work and source. The focus of this corporate involvement is toward the following areas:
- Education –
- higher education, and
- elementary and secondary schools that have focused programs designed:
- to prepare students for the workplace,
- for students with special needs, and
- for our diverse communities.
- Health and Wellness
- Environment and Habitat
- Culture and the Arts
Carnegie Corporation of New York
NOTE: Letters of inquiry are accepted on a rolling basis; there are no deadlines. Please note that we do not seek, and rarely fund, unsolicited grant applications.
American public education prepares all students with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions they need to be active participants in a robust democracy and to be successful in the global economy.
Read more about the Education Program.
New Designs to Advance Learning
Our grantmaking funds school- and classroom-based innovations to better support student learning and holistic youth development, with an emphasis on meeting each student’s unique needs, ensuring deep mastery of content and skills, and improving academic outcomes.
Schools today are charged with preparing students to thrive in an increasingly complex world. This extends beyond supporting academic success and includes equipping young people to actively engage in our democracy and workforce. In order to meet this challenge, schools of the future will need to be places where learning is deeply personalized, instruction is focused on mastery of core skills, competencies, and knowledge, and holistic youth development is woven into the student experience. Our investments support schools, school districts, charter management organizations, and other school support organizations in catalyzing and implementing these changes.
Pathways to Postsecondary Success
We invest to reimagine pathways to educational and economic opportunity for high school graduates. This includes initiatives to improve college access and completion, particularly for low-income and first-generation students, as well as efforts to better align K–12 learning, higher education, and careers.
Given the changing nature of the economy, it is more imperative than ever for students to attain some postsecondary education to thrive in the global economy. This requires American education to collaborate with the labor market in the design of better pathways to opportunity for all students beyond high school graduation. By providing a diversity of options and flexibility necessary to accommodate the range of student needs and ambitions after high school, we can improve outcomes for all students, especially those who have faced historic barriers to opportunity. To meet that need, our grantmaking supports initiatives to improve postsecondary access and completion, and to expand the range of postsecondary pathways available to students, and to ensure that K–12 and higher education collaborate with the labor market to prepare young people for the future of work.
Leadership and Teaching to Advance Learning
We work to ensure that all students benefit from content-rich, standards-aligned instruction by funding efforts to strengthen teaching and school leadership, including the development of high-quality instructional materials and curriculum-based professional learning.
Educators today are tasked with holding all students to high academic standards in mathematics, English language arts/literacy, and science, requiring an increase in both the rigor of instruction and the level of student engagement in order to achieve those expectations. As a result, teachers adapt teaching to meet students’ diverse needs while helping them master the academic content, skills, and habits of mind required for success in school and life. To help educators meet these challenges, the Corporation invests in the development of high-quality instructional materials and curriculum-based professional learning for teachers and instructional leaders. It also supports a wide range of initiatives to advance the knowledge, skills, and practices that educators need to support student success, including clinically rich teacher preparation, coaching and mentoring, and ongoing professional development for teachers and school leaders.
Our grantmaking aims to build a shared understanding about the changes needed to ensure that all students excel in school and life, including efforts to foster collaboration among families, educators, community leaders, and students as true partners in achieving that vision.
Research shows that students thrive when families have a meaningful role in their education and schools are stronger when they have close ties to their communities. But not all children experience the benefits of strong community and family engagement at their schools. At the same time, the perspectives of families and educators are often neglected when school reforms are being developed and implemented, which can lead to frustrations that compromise the success of those initiatives. Our grantmaking aims to reverse those trends by bringing together families, communities, students, educators, policymakers, and the public in support of an equitable and educational system and high-quality learning experiences for all. These efforts include initiatives to elevate the concerns and priorities of families and educators, empowering them to shape educational policy and practice. We also fund programs to bridge the gap between home and school. This work ensures that all families have access to the information and best practices they need to navigate and support their children’s education and that they are able to act as effective advocates for change. Because we believe an informed public is vital to ensuring educational equity, we also support media organizations to encourage national and local conversations about issues that matter most to families and educators.
Integration, Learning, and Innovation
Our grantmaking is designed to ensure that everyone invested in improving our nation’s schools works together more effectively to design and implement improvement strategies within complex systems. This includes efforts to reduce fragmentation, foster collaboration, and build cultures of continuous learning, as well as sharing lessons learned with the field.
School systems in the United States are exceedingly complex, encompassing great diversity and competing demands. New initiatives are often introduced without engaging the people who will be most affected by them or considering how changes in one area might have ripple effects in others. As a result, the field of education has often struggled to put promising ideas into practice, slowing the pace of progress for students. Two central challenges have been the tendency to design and implement improvement strategies in isolation, and the limited or ineffective sharing of knowledge across the field. The Corporation seeks to change these patterns by catalyzing integrated approaches that are better suited to improving complex social systems. Our grantmaking also supports initiatives to help people in schools, districts, and states learn from one other and from their own work, paying particular attention to creating a collective vision, designing and managing change effectively and inclusively, and fostering a culture of continuous learning and improvement.
Hearst Foundations' Mission
The Hearst Foundations identify and fund outstanding nonprofits to ensure that people of all backgrounds in the United States have the opportunity to build healthy, productive and inspiring lives.
Hearst Foundations' Goals
The Foundations seek to achieve their mission by funding approaches that result in:
- Improved health and quality of life
- Access to high quality educational options to promote increased academic achievement
- Arts and sciences serving as a cornerstone of society
- Sustainable employment and productive career paths for adults
- Stabilizing and supporting families
The Hearst Foundations support well-established nonprofit organizations that address significant issues within their major areas of interests – culture, education, health and social service – and that primarily serve large demographic and/or geographic constituencies. In each area of funding, the Foundations seek to identify those organizations achieving truly differentiated results relative to other organizations making similar efforts for similar populations. The Foundations also look for evidence of sustainability beyond their support.
The Hearst Foundations fund cultural institutions that offer meaningful programs in the arts and sciences, prioritizing those which enable engagement by young people and create a lasting and measurable impact. The Foundations also fund select programs nurturing and developing artistic talent.
Types of Support: Program, capital and, on a limited basis, general and endowment support
The Hearst Foundations fund educational institutions demonstrating uncommon success in preparing students to thrive in a global society. The Foundations’ focus is largely on higher education, but they also fund innovative models of early childhood and K-12 education, as well as professional development.
Types of Support: Program, scholarship, capital and, on a limited basis, general and endowment support
The Hearst Foundations assist leading regional hospitals, medical centers and specialized medical institutions providing access to high-quality healthcare for low-income populations. In response to the shortage of healthcare professionals necessary to meet the country’s evolving needs, the Foundations also fund programs designed to enhance skills and increase the number of practitioners and educators across roles in healthcare. Because the Foundations seek to use their funds to create a broad and enduring impact on the nation’s health, support for medical research and the development of young investigators is also considered.
Types of Support: Program, capital and, on a limited basis, endowment support
The Hearst Foundations fund direct-service organizations that tackle the roots of chronic poverty by applying effective solutions to the most challenging social and economic problems. The Foundations prioritize supporting programs that have proven successful in facilitating economic independence and in strengthening families. Preference is also given to programs with the potential to scale productive practices in order to reach more people in need.
Types of Support: Program, capital and general support
We are an advisory, advocacy, and grant-making organization dedicated to building better communities by enabling the growth and advancement of individuals
We advise and invest in seven areas of social change that build, inform, and strengthen the individual -- so that each may contribute to an even greater community.
Advancement of philanthropy + volunteerism
Each of us has something valuable to offer our community, and we strive to elevate and activate the seed of philanthropy and the rewards of giving in every person we meet and every organization we influence.
We focus our efforts on strengthening diaspora communities, and helping young people cultivate the lifelong habit of giving— areas that instill a philanthropic ethic for future generations.
Building a more competitive workforce for the future requires a radical rethinking of the tools, capabilities, and values we teach today – to students of all ages.
We invest in forward thinking programs that celebrate and deliver individual learning and leadership opportunities. In addition, we sponsor individuals of Persian heritage in their pursuit of higher learning in the fields of economic policy.
Technology has moved the responsibility of wealth creation out of the hands of governments and corporations into the hands of individuals. The future economy depends on the ability for individuals to think of themselves as value creators, building the skills that allow them to create opportunity.
We invest in organizations that cultivate entrepreneurial thinking, problem- solving, and opportunity globally.
Debate + advocacy
Social progress that is meaningful, constructive, and benefits the greatest part of society requires a continuous flow of fresh ideas and dialogue with the most progressive and provocative thinkers.
We enable the exploration and development of social policy that is focused on creating better outcomes, by investing in organizations that fuel conversation, policy-making, and social action.
Prevention of child sexual abuse
Sexual abuse destroys a child's ability to trust the words and actions of others, and their perceptions of the world. A "lost" child robs society of their potential contribution, and increases the likelihood that they, too, will repeat the cycle of abuse.
We support organizations that are focused on preventing abuse through institutional programs and media that provide tools for identifying potential threats and acting accordingly.
Advancement of women + girls
The female leaders of tomorrow depend on the role models and support systems we have today that help them develop their identity, build their confidence, and express their true voice — in their families, their communities, and the world.
We support organizations that provide mentorship and create opportunities for girls and women who need encouragement for the path they're on, or support to change course.
Crisis management + rebuilding
When tragedy strikes a community — natural disasters, health epidemics, political unrest — it threatens not only the present population, but also the generations to come.
We support organizations that focus on the health and healing of communities in transition so that life in these areas can return to a productive, peaceful, and promising future.
HAND Foundation is currently accepting unsolicited inquiries from organizations working on prevention of child sex abuse.
We support organizations that are focused on preventing abuse through institutional programs and media that provide tools for identifying potential threats and acting accordingly.
Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation
The Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation is a family foundation based on the philanthropic principals and traditions that began with William Snee and his wife Katherine Reinhardt-Snee several decades ago.
Their contributions supported the continued development of humanitarian programs, food and clothing for disaster relief, growth of the fine arts, advancement in medical research and innovation in educational programming. Even though the Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation encompasses many broad areas of concern, or categories, there is no one area deemed more important than the next. Nevertheless, the Foundation has found it beneficial underwriting grants that are tangible in nature or serve a higher number of individuals within the community and surrounding areas. The Foundation continually aids organizations that are endlessly striving to serve the community in various ways such as improving social conditions, expanding education, and working to better the environment.
The Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation’s Board of Directors has designated several areas of concern comprised of specific intentions.
- Arts/Culture: Performing arts, humanities, media and communications, multipurpose museums, public broadcasting, and historical preservations.
- Education: Promotional programs for elementary, secondary and vocational systems, colleges/universities, graduate programs, adult and multipurpose libraries.
- Environmental: Support of natural resources, beautification programs, pollution control, environmental education, and horticultural/botanical programs.
- Health/Medical: Rural health care, crisis intervention, special programs in health centers, and prevention/treatment of specific diseases.
- Human Services: Youth development and recreation, disaster relief, employment training/ placement, multipurpose agencies, and abuse prevention.
- Religion: The theological education and ecumenical programs as well as the mission of many churches, synagogues, and religious charities.
- Miscellaneous: Because every grant cannot be included into a category, the Snee-Reinhardt Charitable Foundation permits grants for animal welfare, community development, sports, camps, fire and police departments and economic development as miscellaneous grants.
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)
OUR TOWN: Grant Program Description
- Bring new attention to or elevate key community assets and issues, voices of residents, local history, or cultural infrastructure.
- Inject new or additional energy, resources, activity, people, or enthusiasm into a place, community issue, or local economy.
- Envision new possibilities for a community or place - a new future, a new way of overcoming a challenge, or approaching problem-solving.
- Connect communities, people, places, and economic opportunity via physical spaces or new relationships.
The National Endowment for the Arts plans to support a variety of projects across the country in urban, rural, and tribal communities of all sizes.
Our Town projects must integrate arts, culture, and design activities into efforts that strengthen communities by advancing local economic, physical, and/or social outcomes. Projects may include activities such as:
Artist residency: A program designed to strategically connect artists with the opportunity to bring their creative skill sets to non-arts institutions, including residencies in government offices, businesses, or other institutions.
Arts festivals: Public events that gather people, often in public space or otherwise unexpected places, to showcase talent and exchange culture.
Community co-creation of art: The process of engaging stakeholders to participate or collaborate alongside artists/designers in conceiving, designing, or fabricating a work or works of art.
Performances: Presentations of a live art work (e.g., music, theater, dance, media).
Public art: A work of art that is conceived for a particular place or community, with the intention of being broadly accessible, and often involving community members in the process of developing, selecting, or executing the work.
Temporary public art: A work of art that is conceived for a particular place or community and meant for display over a finite period of time, with the intention of being broadly accessible and often involving community members in developing, selecting, or executing the work.
Cultural planning: The process of identifying and leveraging a community's cultural resources and decision-making (e.g., creating a cultural plan, or integrating plans and policies around arts and culture as part of a city master planning process).
Cultural district planning: The process of convening stakeholders to identify a specific geography with unique potential for community and/or economic development based on cultural assets (e.g., through designation, branding, policy, plans, or other means).
Creative asset mapping: The process of identifying the people, places, physical infrastructure, institutions, and customs that hold meaningful aesthetics, historical, and/or economic value that make a place unique.
Public art planning: The process of developing community-wide strategies and/or policies that guide and support commissioning, installing, and maintaining works of public art and/or temporary public art.
Artist/designer-facilitated community planning: Artists/designers leading or partnering in the creative processes of visioning, and for solutions to community issues.
Design of artist space: Design processes to support the creation of dedicated spaces for artists to live and/or to produce, exhibit, or sell their work.
Design of cultural facilities: Design processes to support the creation of a dedicated building or space for creating and/or showcasing arts and culture.
Public space design: The process of designing elements of public infrastructure, or spaces where people congregate (e.g., parks, plazas, landscapes, neighborhoods, districts, infrastructure, and artist-produced elements of streetscapes).
Artist and Creative Industry Support
Creative business development: Programs or services that support entrepreneurs and businesses in the creative industries, or help cultivate strong infrastructure for establishing and developing creative businesses.
Professional artist development: Programs or services that support artists professionally, such as through skill development or accessing markets and capital.
Through Our Town projects, the National Endowment for the Arts Endowment intends to achieve the following objective: Strengthening Communities: Provide opportunities for the arts to be integrated into the fabric of community life.
Our Town project outcomes may include:
Economic Change: Economic improvements of individuals, institutions, or the community including local business growth, job creation/labor force participation, professional development/training, prevention of displacement, in-migration, and tourism.
Physical Change: Physical improvements that occur to the built and natural environment including beautification and/or enhancement of physical environment, new construction, and redevelopment (including arts, culture, and public space).
Social Change: Improvements to social relationships, civic engagement and community empowerment, and/or amplifying community identity including civic engagement, collective efficacy, social capital, social cohesion, and community attachment.
Systems Change: Improvements to community capacity to sustain the integration of arts, culture, and design into strategies for advancing local economic, physical, and/or social outcomes including, for example: establishment of new and lasting cross-sector partnerships; shifts in institutional structure, practices or policies; replication or scaling of innovative project models; establishment of training programs; or dissemination of informational resources to support the creative placemaking field.