Frequently Asked Questions

If I want to write a grant proposal, who can help me get started?
The OCGFR and SRI staff have reference materials, workbooks, and proposal guides that can help you familiarize yourself with the grant process.

Will the College provide in-kind contributions to a program/project?
Yes.  Space, facilities, equipment, and utilities may be contributed based on availability. Agreements and arrangements for such contribution must be made in advance of the proposal preparation.

Does the College provide hard-dollar (cash) matching funds?
This is possible, but this resource must be requested in advance.  If the grant requires cash matching funds greater than $5,000, the Principal Investigator should submit a fundraising strategy to secure additional dollars.  The PI should work with the staff at OCGFR or SRI to target sources of matching requirements.

Who pays for copying, mailing, or otherwise delivering the proposal?
Many applications are submitted electronically by an authorized representative at Sage.  OCGFR and SRI personnel will help you with submission requirements and processes.  For an individual grant proposal, the faculty member applying for the grant—or her/his department—is responsible for all costs associated with packaging and delivering his/her proposal.  For a program-specific grant proposal, costs for copying and mailing are covered by the program or unit budget.  For an institutional grant proposal, the OCGFR covers the cost of packaging and delivering the application.

Who writes the proposal?
The person who initiates the program concept or the grant application process, also known as the Principle Investigator (PI) or Program Director (PD), is the content expert for the project.  The PI and the project team are responsible for writing the grant proposal.

Does Sage have anyone who will write a proposal for me?
The College does not have staff to write Faculty Research or Program-specific proposals; however, the OCGFR and SRI staff can provide templates for some grant components, assist with editing and proofreading major grant applications, and review the application for clarity and presentation.

What role does the OCGFR and SRI staff play in the application process?
OCGFR and SRI staff are available to help brainstorm ideas and think through program processes, provide a grantor’s perspective, answer questions or direct the PI to the appropriate person, and provide information on funding sources as well as sample proposals if available. OCGFR and SRI staff have relationships with many funding agencies, and can assist in the application process by, for example, placing telephone calls on behalf of the proposal.  The OCGFR and SRI also provide follow-up after the funding source determines awards. Additionally, OCGFR and SRI staff will act as liaison to the Grants Planning Committee and assist the PI in negotiating the grant application process.

If a faculty member or other member of the Sage community writes a grant and does not use the services of OCGFR or SRI, should the person still notify them of a grant application and its outcome?
No grant may be submitted without institutional approval.  The OCGFR or SRI must be notified of all grant submissions, and the funding source must be vetted to ensure that it is not a conflict with other institutional applications.  This practice has several other benefits: 1) OCGFR and SRI will always keep a record of the application for future reference; 2) if another person should apply to the same funding source in the future, a lot can be learned from prior application; and 3) whenever grant funding is involved and questions pertaining to the application arise (either from the grantor, Business Office, or other source) most often OCGFR or SRI is the first place of contact and can direct inquiry to the appropriate person or place for answers.  

What about Faculty Release Time?
Grant Funded Research - Release Time Policy  

I Release Time

  • Under normal circumstances, released time of 6 to 7 load credits per academic year is
  • The released time commitment may be made for up to 3 consecutive years.
  • Faculty with released time for research may ordinarily teach no more than one overload course during the academic year.
  • Faculty are encouraged to devote summer months to research and to build summer stipends into their grant proposals.  

II Value of Released Time

  • In grant proposals, valuation of released time during the academic year and the time spent on the project during the summer is based on a percentage of salary.  (e.g. percent of time released).
  • During the academic year, funds to support released time go to the institution to support instructional and administrative costs.   During the summer, grant support stipends go directly to the faculty member.    

III. Departmental Approval

  • The Department must approve the staffing plan accounting for the released time.
  • Whenever possible, provision should be made in the grant proposal for the involvement of students  

Do all grant applications have to go through the Grants Planning Committee?
No.  The Dean of the respective school may approve small grant applications.  Program-specific grants at a minor level, which do not require direct matching funds, may be approved by the VPAA, VPCL, or other senior officer as appropriate. All other proposals go to the GPC for preliminary review and require final approval from a senior officer or the president.

Does "concept paper" and "grant application" mean the same thing?
No. The grant process begins in the concept stage, when the grant idea and proposed budget (a.k.a. Grant Concept Paper) are reviewed and approved at all necessary levels and funding sources are identified. Once preliminary approval has been secured, a full grant application (proposal) is prepared in response to the grantor’s guidelines.  

What happens when I win a grant?
Notify OCGFR or SRI immediately of the grant award and send a copy of the award letter to help maintain complete files.  OCGFR or SRI staff will alert the Business Office that an award has been made to ensure the accounting paperwork is correct, complete, and will be dispersed appropriately.  In addition, you should notify all others who participated in the grant-approval process.  

What if a grant application is denied or not funded?
OCGFR and SRI staff will call the grantor to determine why the application was not funded. Whenever possible, the staff will secure copies of the grant rating sheets to determine where the application ranked in the rating process.  Many times an application makes the cut off range for funding, but is not awarded simply because the grantor ran out of funds for the year.  Often those applications can be resubmitted the following year with only a few minor changes, such as updating signatures, support letters, and application dates.