Getting Started

First, ask yourself:

  • What type of funding do I want: short-term, long-term, leave, fellowship, equipment?
  • When do I need the grant: summer, next academic year?

Then, ask:

  • What, specifically, do I intend to do?
  • How would I do it?
  • Why is this work distinctive and important?
  • To whom is this work important?
  • What has already been done or funded in this area? (Who has funded it?)

What the W&L CFR Faculty Grant Support office can do to assist you:

  • Help find a match between your idea and potential funding sources.
  • Advise and review as you develop and draft proposals, including initial letters.
  • Assist with budget estimates.
  • Provide university data.
  • Help submit proposals.

What you can do to help yourself:

  • In addition to using internet resources including Google searches and information and search engines on the faculty grant support web site, learn all you can about funders by talking with colleagues both here at W&L and other institutions.
  • Tell your department chair and dean of your intentions. (Fill out the routing form!)  If the grant for which you are applying involves any institutional resources (matching funds, the use of facilities, students, classroom time, etc.) this is essential. Consultation early in the process will ensure that you do not spend time on a proposal that is not institutionally feasible.
  • Keep in mind that many grant applications require at least one, and often more than one, recommender. Consider who you will ask to support you based on both their enthusiasm for your project and their activity and influence in your field.
  • In crafting your proposal, write clearly, concisely, compellingly and carefully (mind typos and other glitches).