Hampden-Sydney College secures support from companies, private organizations, and charitable foundations for academic programs and other College-wide initiatives, construction and renovation, professorships, and scholarships.

This academic year, our grants community submitted more than $2 million in grants requests!! That is an extraordinary achievement and I congratulate you on this work.

Many of these grants projects were interdisciplinary and a number of them explored resources and grantors new to Hampden-Sydney. Interestingly, most of these requests were not for large projects, meaning that a wide cross-section of our campus was grants-seeking. Some of you even participated on multiple project teams. Most important, we should not forget that each grant-seeker undertook grants work in addition to the teaching load, committee service, advising/mentoring and research work that makes for your day-to-day.

Where do we go from here? Bigger and better, of course! This year we undertook one project request at the half-million mark that may be transformative for us; more requests on that funding scale and with significant transformative potential are in the planning stages. We also explored more public funding resources than we have in the past - a type of funding that can be harder to obtain, but may open the door for interesting collaborations and community partnerships from which we will reap continuing benefits. 

Along the way, we continued to build the tools, resources and partnerships that will make grants both easier to undertake and more rewarding for you. Thank you for your embrace of new ideas, creative approaches, and open communication.

Remember, now that AY 2016-17 is closing, the Grants Connection will be on hiatus until August. In the meantime, enjoy a great adventure this summer!

PJ. Townsend, Director of College Grants

Current Funding Announcements & Events


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Proposal Tips of the Month

  1. In "The 'How To' Grants Manual" (1999), David Bauer suggests that you think of your project concept in as many ways as possible in order to expand your grantor pool. This does not mean redefining your basic concept, but you may be able to more broadly focus your project's appeal by considering these categories:
    • To what subject areas can you relate your project?
    • Which constituencies or target groups may benefit from the project?
    • What type(s) of grant do you seek - needs assessment, seed funding, research?
    • Can you expand the geographic areas of your project to attract more or different resources?
    • Will collaborating partners add depth or appeal to potential grantors?
  2. Some grantors require the Letter of Intent or Letter of Inquiry (LOI) prior to accepting a full proposal for review. This is usually an interim step that allows the grantor to better understand if your proposed project is a good fit with the grantor's priorities. The LOI is brief, yes, but do not mistake its brevity for unimportance. When you write the LOI, you must already understand the full requirements for a proposal that is appealing to the grantor. This means you should have your intended project well-mapped, and draw from that to develop the LOI. Here's a sample of the generally required information to include in your LOI:
    • Mission and overview of existing programs that support/leverage the proposed project;
    • Needs statement, including data that clearly documents your position and addresses why you seek this grantor at this time for this project;
    • A description of any intended outcomes from the proposed project; and
    • A brief description of methodology, including the credentials that help the grantor understand the leadership attirbutes of your project team.
  3. Writing in the Grant Professionals Association Blog, Lauren Steiner outlines "3 Compelling Reasons Strong Needs Statements Improve Grant Proposals." Read the full article to see how she substantiates 1) Foundations fund the WHY not the WHAT, 2) A powerful needs statement anchors your compelling case, and 3) Clear writing starts with clear thinking.
  4. Answer these questions to create a proposal outline that will ease your proposal development process. Each question structures the distinct parts of most proposals:
    1. Why do you (your organization) need these funds? (Needs assessment)
    2. What are you going to do with these funds? (Goals, objectives)
    3. Why should the grantor give these funds to you rather than another organization? (Methodology, outcomes. Be careful here not to bash potential competitors - stay focused on your own positive outcomes.)
    4. Who else is doing what you are doing in the community (or for the same audience, etc.)? (Internal and external landscape analysis; compare and contrast. This helps identify a gap that you are well-positioned to fill.)
    5. How will the grantor know you used these funds effectively? (Budget, evaluation plan)


This Month's Most Interesting Reading

Continue to use the Grants Toolbox page, where you will find a library of resources to help you build your proposal.

Featured reports will remain in the Grants Connection, like this month's most interesting reading: 

Deconstructing the Breakthrough Leadership Thinking of Visionary Social Change Agents - Insights and Strategies for Leading Transformative Change from Four Case Studies, Joseph G. Claudet

GOVERNING The States and Localities, Economic Engines, "Can a Small College Save its Small Town?"

National Academies Press, Training Students to Extract Value from Big Data: Summary of a Workshop

National Academies Press, Reaching Students: What Research Says about Effective Instruction in Undergraduate Science and Engineering

Grants Toolbox



Academic Year to Date Awards (as of July 5, 2017) = $106,485
KUDOS Awards Ticker for AY 2016-17 = $737,777


Faculty Research

Scholarship and teaching are intimately related. Here are some of our faculty's current research projects.

Faculty Research

Director of College Grants

PJ. Townsend
(424) 223-6144
Estcourt Annex | Box 637
Hampden-Sydney College

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