Frequently Asked Questions Related to Grants

Explore below for answers to the most commonly asked questions about the grant approval process. View the Grants Procedure Manual for more information.

Accordion FAQ Table

Question 1:  How do I obtain the signatures from the College President or Vice Presidents on a letter of commitment if needed when I intend to support a project submitted by another school?

Requests for signatures typically take ten (10) work days.

  • Make the request through Grants Development
  • Provide an email from your supervisor agreeing to your participation in the project, a summary of your involvement, and a link to the Request for Proposals

If your involvement is extensive and grant funding will come to EFSC as a result of your participation, the project should be treated like a proposal submitted by the College and follow the process described in the Grants Procedures Manual.

If your participation is approved, submit the letter of commitment to the Grants Development Office to forward it to the Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center for the Vice President to obtain the President's signature.

Question 2:  What is most important to know about the grants process at EFSC?

After approval by the President or delegate, faculty or staff members and the Grants Development Officer will determine the best strategy for proposal development on a case-by-case basis. Faculty or staff members usually write small requests or discipline specific requests. Proposals, amendments, reports and contracts related to funded projects must be reviewed and submitted by the Grants Development Office. Do not submit a proposal yourself unless you have written permission from a senior level administrator. Most grant proposals are submitted by the Grants Development Office.

Question 3:  How soon do I need to contact the Grants Development Office when I want to develop a proposal?

Contact the Grants Development Office when you are considering pursuit of a grant and before you start project development. It is difficult to attain a level of competitive quality for many federal grants with less than two months of concentrated effort. Some federal grants require a year or more of advanced planning.

Question 4:  Can staff and faculty submit any proposal of interest to us?

Proposals must align with the College mission, be academic in nature or connected with student support, and directly impact College students or stakeholders. If the College President or delegate does not approve a project concept, the Grants Development staff will work with you to refine the concept if possible.

Question 5:  I am a faculty or staff member interested in pursuing a grant. How do I get started?

  • Initiate the concept approval process by contacting a Grants Development Officer and discussing your concept
  • Complete the Grant Concept Approval Form
  • Obtain either email or hard copy approval for your request from your supervisor
  • Forward both the Grant Concept Approval Form and your supervisor’s approval to Grants Development
  • Grants Development refers your request to the Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center
  • The Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center obtains a decision from the College President or delegate and notifies the Grants Development Officer
  • The Grants Development Officer notifies you, usually within two (2) days of your request

Question 6:  If the College accepts my request to develop a grant, how will I be involved in the process?

Grants Development will establish a timeline of deadlines and division of responsibilities for the narrative and supporting materials on a case-by-case basis.

You will be integrally involved in the development process and lead the project if funded. If your project has a narrow focus (for example, departmental) or a highly technical one, you will write the narrative and provide budget line items and costs. Grants Development Officers use your input to create the budget and budget narrative in the format preferred by Accounting.

Grants Development Officers usually write major or college-wide grants with input from college subject matter experts. Involved departments provide the budget line items and costs for major and college-wide grants.

With few exceptions, a draft budget and draft narrative should be submitted to the Grants Development Officer no fewer thirteen (13) work days in advance of the submission deadline. At least six people (including the College President and the Vice President of Academic Affairs) and three offices are involved in the approval process. We always seek to be respectful of their other responsibilities and give them the maximum review time.

Question 7:  What is the approval process like?

  • With few exceptions, no later than ten (10) work days before deadline, Grants Development will review the budget and narrative and submit the narrative to the Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center and the budget to Accounting
  • Edits requested by the Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center are made to the narrative and the budget is corrected as required by Accounting
  • The final budget approved by Accounting, the narrative with requested edits, and all supporting documents are submitted to the Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center
  • The Executive Director of Career Planning and Development Center initiates obtaining approval to submit from the appropriate Vice President and the College President
  • Upon receipt of the President’s approval, Grants Development submits the proposal

Question 8:  Who is responsible for managing the funded project?

The faculty or staff member is responsible for managing the project in compliance with the requirements of the funding agency, attaining deliverables, documenting expenditures, communicating with Accounting and preparing reports for the funding agency. Depending on the agency awarding the project, this lead position may be referred to as project manager or principal investigator. Grants Development supports, but does not manage, funded projects.

Question 9:  Who has ultimate responsibility for ensuring the grant activities occur?

Ultimate responsibility for monitoring your project management is shared by Accounting and your supervisor. Accounting monitors expenditures. Your supervisor monitors your performance.

Question 10:  What does Grants Development do after the grant has been awarded?

In conjunction with Accounting, we provide principal investigators/project managers and their supervisors with a summary of deliverables and an overview of College procedures and pertinent federal and state laws, rules and regulations. We review drafts of all program reports prior to submission and assume communication with the funding agency in the event of a problem.

Question 11:  If the Grants Development Office declines my request to pursue a grant, may I pursue it on my own?

No, you may not pursue a grant without approval. The decision to decline pursuing a grant is made in conjunction with senior level administrators, not by the Grants Development Office staff alone.

Question 12:  What kind of communication with the Grants Development Office is necessary post-award?

We review all reports prior to submission. Grants Development needs copies of all official notices you receive from the funding agency. Please alert us regarding any problems you encounter in attaining deliverables or the need to take a leave of absence from the College. Never make changes in scope of project or budget without consulting Grants Development or Accounting. Such changes usually require authorization from the funding agency prior to implementation.