Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation: Grants for College Readiness

OVERVIEW: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation supports global and national causes, including K-12 education and college readiness. Its education funding prioritizes minority and low-income students.

IP TAKE: The Gates Foundation aims to improve academic outcomes for minority and low-income students in the U.S. and supports broad range of research, policy and interventions to this end. While this funder does not accept unsolicited proposals, it posts RFPs on its website.

PROFILE: The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation was founded in 2000 by Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda, and is based in Seattle, Washington. Maintaining that “all lives have equal value,” this foundation runs global and U.S. funding programs. Its global programs address health, development, policy and advocacy, and its U.S. programs support K-12 education, economic mobility, postsecondary success and specific causes in the state of Washington

The aim of the Gates Foundation's K-12 funding is to "significantly increase the number of black, Latino, and low-income students who earn a diploma, enroll in a postsecondary institution, and are on track in their first year to obtain a credential with labor-market value." The foundation has supported New Classrooms Innovation Partners, Inc., a nonprofit that has developed successful individualized learning programs and facilitates the use of these programs in underperforming schools across the U.S. Another grantee is the Aspen Institute, a think tank that promotes equity in education.

Gates Foundation grants range from about $100,000 to $9 million. A database of awarded grants is available on the foundation's website.

This funder accepts proposals by invitation only, but posts RFPs on its website.


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