Carnegie Corporation of New York: Grants for STEM Higher Education

OVERVIEW: The Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY) seeks to affect both the K-12 and higher education systems by making STEM-related disciplines more appealing to all students. It also aims to increase the number of STEM teachers in America's K-12 classrooms.

IP TAKE: Carnegie wants to raise an army of STEM teachers from the ranks of college students majoring in science and technology fields. Although Carnegie does not have grantmaking program completely dedicated to STEM projects in higher education, if you're thinking about higher education as a means of systemic change in education from childhood on, your agenda is Carnegie's agenda.

PROFILE: The Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY) is one of the largest and oldest foundations in the United States. Founded in 1911 by Andrew Carnegie, CCNY remains one of the most known and influential foundations in the country. The corporation prioritizes education and seeks to ensure that all U.S. public education students are equipped with the “knowledge, skills, and dispositions they need to be active participants in a robust democracy and to be successful in the global economy.”

CCNY conducts its STEM education grantmaking through its Education program, which has a heavy STEM focus in both K-12 and higher education. Past grantees include public school systems, science teacher associations, policy and advocacy groups, university training and research programs, museums, education nonprofits, and more.

A significant amount of Carnegie’s STEM funding is a result of its support of the 100Kin10 network. Co-founded in 2011 by then-Carnegie-program-officer Talia Milgrom-Elcott, 100Kin10 seeks to address the shortage of STEM teachers and improve STEM learning. By encouraging more college students to study STEM-related disciplines and bring that knowledge to K-12 classrooms across the country, the initiative hopes to train 100,000 high-quality science, mathematics, and technology teachers by 2021 and do a better job of retaining them. Partners in the 100Kin10 initiative include colleges and universities, museums, foundations, non-profit organizations, and teacher recruitment organizations such as Teach for America.

The sizes of Carnegie grants for STEM education range significantly, generally falling between $15,000 and $500,000. Even though it does not have an education program dedicated exclusively to STEM, this area is a priority for Carnegie, and there are certainly grants available for education nonprofits and providers, both domestic and international.

New grantseekers should review the eligibility criteria under the How to Apply section before sending letters of inquiry (accepted year-round). It is important to note, however, that the foundation does “not seek” and “rarely fund[s] unsolicited grant applications.” For international projects, grantseekers should keep in mind that Carnegie is only able to offer support “for a small percent of funding to be granted to nonprofit organizations based in countries that are, or have been, members of the British Commonwealth.”


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