Funding Opportunities

Our Foundation Relations team works directly with Kent State faculty and staff and private foundations to develop mutually beneficial relationships. We work to identify and engage foundation partners that share interests and priorities with Kent State. We invite you to follow the links on this page to learn more about these select funding opportunities.


Please note that this list does not represent all of Kent State's foundation partners or potential funders.


Some foundations may accept a limited number of proposals from a single institution. The Foundation Relations staff coordinates proposal submissions across the university to ensure we submit a proposal with the best chance of receiving funding. If you have a project or program that aligns with one or more of these foundations' funding priorities, please contact the Foundation Relations team. 

The Carnegie Corporation of New York

Founded by Andrew Carnegie to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding of teaching. Mr. Carnegie established the Carnegie Steel Company, which launched the steel industry in Pittsburgh, PA. During his lifetime, he personally donated more than $300 million in gifts, including over $56 million toward over 2,500 municipal library buildings throughout the English-speaking world.

  • Initial Approach: Letter of Interest - Contact Foundation Relations
  • Areas of Interest: Education, Democracy, International Peace and Security, Higher Education and Research in Africa

The Nathan Cummings Foundation

The Nathan Cummings Foundation is rooted in the Jewish tradition and committed to democratic values and social justice, including fairness, diversity and community. This foundation seeks to build a socially and economically just society that values nature and protects the ecological balance for future generations, promotes humane health care and fosters arts and culture that enriches communities.

  • Initial Approach: Letter of Interest - Contact Foundation Relations
  • Areas of Interest: Arts and Culture, Ecology, Health, Jewish Initiatives

W. M. Keck Foundation

The W. M. Keck Foundation’s objective is to support outstanding science, engineering and medical research that will have a significant impact in solving complex issues and problems. The Foundation strives to fund endeavors that are distinctive and novel in their approach. It encourages projects that are high-risk with the potential for transformative impact. High-risk comprises a number of factors, including questions that push the edge of the field, present unconventional approaches to intransient problems, or challenge the prevailing paradigm. Transformative may mean creation of a new field of research, development of new instrumentation enabling observations not previously possible, or discovery of knowledge that challenges prevailing perspectives.

  • Initial Approach: Contact Foundation Relations – limited submission opportunity
  • Areas of interest: Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Computer Science, Engineering, Life Science, Marine Science, Mathematics, Physical Sciences

The Lumina Foundation

The mission of the Lumina Foundation is to expand access and success in education beyond high school, particularly among adults, first-generation college students, low-income students and students of color. This mission is directed toward a single, overarching big goal: to increase the percentage of Americans with high-quality degrees and credentials to 60 percent by the year 2025.

  • Initial Approach: Letter of Interest - Contact Foundation Relations
  • Areas of Interest: Retention, Next-Generation College Preparation, Adult Degree Completion, Higher Education

John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Founded by the late John D. MacArthur, a Midwestern businessman and real estate magnate. He built a vast fortune, primarily through ownership and development of Bankers Life and Casualty Co. of Chicago, the largest health and casualty underwriter in the nation, as well as other businesses including considerable property in Florida and New York. Programs address issues in the United States, including community and economic development, housing, juvenile justice reform, education (with a focus on digital and media learning) and the use of economic analysis in policy making.

  • Initial Approach: Varies - Contact Foundation Relations
  • Areas of Interest: Journalism, Health, Maternal Morbidity, Health Policy, Public Policy, Aging, Population Studies, Affordable Housing

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

Founded by the late Alfred P. Sloan, who for many years served as the President and CEO of General Motors Corporation and was active in the foundation’s affairs until his death in 1966. The Foundation is unique in its focus on science, technology and economic institutions, and believes the scholars and practitioners who work in these fields are chief drivers of the nation’s health and prosperity. In each grant program, this foundation seeks proposals for original projects led by outstanding individuals or teams.

  • Initial Approach: Letter of Interest - Contact Foundation Relations
  • Areas of Interest: Science, Economics, Higher Education, Digital Technology, Public Understanding, Working Longer, Energy and Environment, and Special Initiatives

The Spencer Foundation

Concerned with advancing the learning and development of children and adults, The Spencer Foundation is interested in studies that lead to better understanding and improvements in the intellectual, material and organizational resources that contribute to successful teaching and learning. A key goal is to support investigations of questions that hold promise for enriching opportunities to learn and for guiding informed policymaking.

  • Initial Approach: Letter of Interest - Contact Foundation Relations
  • Areas of Interest: Teaching, Learning and Instructional Resources, Organizational Learning, Purposes and Values of Education

The Commonwealth Fund
Deadline: Rolling (July, November and April)
Funding: $25,000 

The Commonwealth Fund offers support for the poor, youth, elderly, uninsured and minorities. It provides funding in support of research on health and social issues. It also makes grants aimed at improving healthcare practices and policies. Types of support include employee-matching gifts, program development, program evaluation, and research. Grant periods range from one month to a few years, depending on the scope of the project. The fund awards grants that support a complete project period, and not annual, renewable grants. The Commonwealth Fund requests letters of inquiry to initiate the grant application process, and does not wish to review full proposals at this stage. Applicants are encouraged to submit letters of inquiry using the online form.

Delmas Foundation General Program

Deadline: Rolling 
Funding: $25,000-$50,000 

The Foundation intends to further the humanities along a broad front, supporting projects which address the concerns of the historical studia humanitatis: a humanistic education rooted in the great traditions of the past; the formation of human beings according to cultural, moral, and aesthetic ideals derived from that past; and the ongoing debate over how these ideals may best be conceived and realized. Programs in the following areas are eligible: history; archeology; literature; languages, both classical and modern; philosophy; ethics; comparative religion; the history, criticism, and theory of the arts; and those aspects of the social sciences which share the content and methods of humanistic disciplines. The Foundation welcomes projects that cross the boundaries between humanistic disciplines and explore the connection between the humanities and other areas of scholarship

Delmas Foundation Humanities Research Library Program

Deadline: Rolling 
Funding: $25,000-$50,000 

The program’s overall objective is to improve the ability of research libraries to serve the needs of scholarships in the humanities and the performing arts, and to help make their resources more widely accessible to scholars and the general public. Wherever possible, grants to libraries seek to promote cooperative cataloguing projects, with an emphasis on access to archival, manuscript and other unique sources; some elements of interpretation and exhibition; scholarly library publications; bibliographical and publishing projects of interest to research libraries; and preservation or conservation work and research. The geographical concentration is primarily (but not exclusively) directed toward European and American history and letters, broadly defined. Technological developments that support humanities research and access to humanities resources are also eligible. Conferences designed to address these issues in collaborative ways, and programs formulated to enhance or leverage similar activity by other institutions, consortia, or funding agencies will also be considered.

Singing for Change

Deadline: Ongoing
Funding: $1,000-$10,000

Singing for Change (SFC) focuses on social and environmental issues. Created by Jimmy Buffett in 1995, SFC was initially funded by contributions from his summer concert tour. Since then, SFC has offered competitive grants to progressive nonprofit organizations working to address the root cause of a social or environmental problem. SFC awards grants to projects in one or more of the following areas:

  1. Children and Families: Grants are awarded to programs that foster family self-sufficiency and stability. Individual therapy is not funded, nor are therapeutic or recreational camps or wish-fulfillment programs.
  2. Environment: Grants are awarded to programs that teach people practical, everyday methods of conservation, protection and the responsible use of natural resources. Efforts to protect individual species or animals are not usually funded by SFC.
  3. Disenfranchised Groups: SFC defines “disenfranchised groups” as people who have been marginalized in society because of their low levels of skill, education or income, people with disabilities and people who are homeless.

Christopher D. Smithers Foundation, Inc.

Deadline: Rolling
Funding: $25,000

The foundation accepts applications for substance abuse and alcoholism education grants. Grants support efforts to show that alcoholism is a treatable disease from which people recover. The grants also fund prevention programs and activities, with an emphasis on high-risk populations (such as at-risk youth and minority groups). Additional, grants support efforts to fight to reduce and eliminate the stigma that is associated with alcoholism. Eligible programs include prevention, treatment, research, public education and creating awareness of alcoholism problems in the workforce. 

United States Golf Association

Deadline: Rolling
Funding: $50,000-$100,000 

Since 1997, the United States Gold Association (USGA) has provided more than $60 million in grants to over 900 non-profit organizations that serve youth through golf. These grants support organizations that introduce the game of golf to people who otherwise would not have the opportunity — specifically kids from economically disadvantaged backgrounds (Junior Golf Program Grants).