How to Write a Grant Proposal
There are literally thousands of federal government grants, state government grants, university grants, private foundation grants, and corporate grants available to help fund your college education. Yet obtaining a college grant is very competitive, and you need to prepare the best application possible in order to secure college grants. Learning how to write a grant proposal is critical to the grant application process, so take a few moments now and learn the keys to writing a successful grant proposal.
College Grants versus Business Grants
First of all, it's important to distinguish between college grants and business grants, because writing a college grant proposal is quite different than writing a business grant proposal. College grants are created with a very straightforward mission: to aid the financially challenged, to foster interest in a particular study area, or to provide opportunity for minorities, among others. Business grants, on the other hand, are offered in just about every industry and are quite broad in scope and purpose. So while college grants simply require that you demonstrate your eligibility, business grants require that you justify the very grounds on which you should get the grant. The result is, writing a college grant proposal is typically much easier and more straightforward than writing a business grant proposal.
The Grant Proposal Application
All college grants require you to fill out a standard application. The grant proposal application typically asks your basic identification and contact information. The other application information depends on the type of college grant you are applying for. For example, if you're applying for a financial need-based grant, you will be asked to supply your income and/or your parents' income. A minority grant application will typically ask for your minority status or which disability you suffer from. The key to properly filling out a grant application is to write clearly and neatly, fill out the application completely, and be as accurate as possible.
The Grant Proposal Supporting Documents
In addition to a grant proposal application, you may need to supply supporting documents to demonstrate your qualifications for the grant. For example, a financial need-based grant may require a copy of your tax documents and/or your parents tax documents. A minority grant application may require you to provide documentation of your minority status, disability, gender status, etc. A military grant application may require you to provide documentation of your military service. And so on.
The Grant Proposal Statement
Some college grant applications require you to provide a formal statement in support of your efforts to secure the grant. The grant proposal statement can vary from a single paragraph to dozens of pages, similar in scope to an executive summary or business plan. It depends entirely on the type of college grant you are applying for. For example, a college grant that is intended to help the financially challenged or minority groups probably will not require a grant proposal statement or detailed summary of why you deserve the grant. On the other hand, a college grant that is given to fund a specific project related to your field of study will likely require a formal statement, summary, or detailed proposal. In such an event, some keys to writing a convincing grant proposal include:
- Outline your project goals
- Present yourself as credible and competent in your chosen field
- Clearly state the problem you are addressing and the purpose of your project
- State your goals and desired outcomes
- Lay out a clear and concise plan of action
- Explain how you plan to evaluate performance and meet milestones
- Detail your budget and how you will effectively use grant funding to achieve your goals
If you're prepared with all the tools necessary to apply for a college grant, let EducationGrantsForSchool help you find all the college grants you're eligible for. So take a moment now and start making your college education more affordable.