Office of the Foundation Relations

Frequently Asked Questions


What needs to be submitted along with the Proposal Clearance form three weeks in advance of the final deadline?

While the final draft of your narrative does not have to be completed at this point, our office needs a budget and a summary of your project to circulate for internal approval.  The summary and budget should indicate clearly any matching commitments and any special circumstances - such as a course release - that will impact the academic program as a whole.  Our office circulates the proposals to get the necessary internal sign-offs, which takes time. Some people required to sign may be traveling or on vacation.  Three weeks lead time makes it possible to contact all concerned and get approval by the deadline.

Why is there so much red tape involved in grant submission?

Some foundations or government agencies may not allow the University to submit more than one proposal in a given time frame.  In the case of large foundations where Southwestern has a longstanding relationship, there may already be proposal ideas under development.  To maximize the benefits from these funding sources, the University needs to coordinate our approach.

The Provost's office and the Office of Fiscal Affairs have to evaluate the impact that grant projects have on the internal workings of the University.  Impacts on teaching loads, the need for additional office space and IT support, matching requirements and other costs to Southwestern are all examples of things that need to be addressed up front to make sure the project will be feasible.  The President personally reviews all proposals over $15,000 and those that require matching funds.

Do all grant requests have to go through the Proposal Clearance process?

No. For example, summer fellowships taking place elsewhere, travel stipends, Sam Taylor Fellowships and ACS Technology Grants have not typically been required to follow the internal routing process. If the University is not going to be the fiscal agent and there are no other commitments on the part of the University, then your project may not need to go through these channels. Feel free to email John or Larkin, if in doubt.