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Tips for Writing Grants

Grants in Action

Here are some tips to help make your Reduce Your Use or Classroom Energy Innovation grant application shine.

Be persuasive. Convince your reviewer that your idea can and will make a difference.

Winning applications have one common characteristic – the idea presented becomes alive to the grant reviewers.

Receive feedback from someone outside your school or organization.

Most of the people on our grant review teams are not educators.

Don't get too fancy. Avoid acronyms or terms that may not be understood by the general public.

Don't wait until the last minute.

Submit your application early. This will give you time to get your questions answered and resolve any unexpected problems.

Be neat. Use spelling- and grammar-check tools.

Treat your application like you would a job, Proofread your application.

Select a title that captures your idea and sparks the grant reviewer's imagination.

Some great examples include:

"Fishes of the Ditches and Other Curious Creatures"

"SLOPS: School Lunch-waste Organic Project Stewards"

"When am I Ever Going to Use Science?"

"H2O Ole6"

"Old but Still Sparky: Reducing Our Use at Eldercare"

"Our Electricity Money is Going to the Dogs"

Write strong objective statements.

Consider using SMART objectives:

S - Specific
M - Measurable
A - Achievable
R - Relevant
T - Time-bound

An example would be: Each student will create a written document detailing the research project, which will be entered in a science contest by the spring semester.

Prepare and attach a separate budget file.

In the online application, advance to screen 7 and attach your budget file before you start completing the fields

Make sure that your e-mail address is listed correctly.

Information on the status of your grant is provided via e-mail.

Sometimes less is more.

State the idea and get to the point quickly.

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