Skip to main content

Grant Seeker's Workshop Series

Description: This program is designed to guide participants through the process of identifying, evaluating, and preparing to pursue external funding opportunities. The series consists of four sequenced workshops that offer hands-on training in a different aspect of grantsmanship. By the end of the series, participants that attend all the workshops can expect to have sharpened the aims of their project, identified the characteristics of a funding solicitation appropriate to their project, and gained a clear sense of what is entailed in developing a budget and proposal should they decide to proceed. Workshops in the series may be taken individually providing participants meet each session’s pre-requisites.

Who Will Benefit:  Villanova faculty, graduate students, and staff in all disciplines and programs who have a project in mind and are ready to delve into some of the preparatory work of entailed in applying for external funding. This series is especially helpful for those making their first foray into grant-seeking.


Workshop 1: Formulating Your Project

This event will be offered: TBD

Creative research ideas are necessary but insufficient for a successful grant proposal. To be fundable, a proposal must clarify what a project can change about the world. Yet many academics are uncomfortable connecting their scholarly or scientific work to concrete change or other broad impacts. This workshop sets participants up for greater funding success by guiding them toward a formulation of their project’s potential significance that coheres their scholarly identity and values. 

Pre-requisites: Participants must come with a particular project in mind for which they are considering seeking funding.

What to expect: This workshop includes independent and/or collaborative exercises designed to help you articulate the significance of your project in a funder-friendly way.


Workshop 2: Finding Funding Opportunities 

This event will be offered: TBD

Funders are especially concerned with how well matched a proposed project is to their funding priorities. In this workshop participants learn how to effectively use funding databases such as SPIN and the Foundation Directory Online to identify relevant opportunities, how to interpret and evaluate the appropriateness of an opportunity, and how to engage with funders.

Pre-requisites: Participants are expected a) to come with a project in mind and a sense of its potential significance beyond the academy; b) to have a list of at least three project-relevant search terms to use for interactive database exercises.

What to expect:  This workshop includes independent and/or collaborative in-session exercises for identifying and assessing project-relevant solicitations.


Workshop 3: Money Matters  

This event will be offered: TBD 

Your budget expresses your project in quantitative terms. This workshop provides an opportunity to learn and apply conceptual and practical techniques to help you translate you project into a compelling budget that complies with university and funder guidelines, shows funders you can apply good stewardship, and allows for smoother management in post-award.

Pre-requisites: Participants are expected a) to view Funding 101 Session 5, Preparing a Grant Submission in advance of the session and b) to come with a project in mind on which to practice task-oriented budget development. 

What to Expect: This workshop includes independent and/or collaborative in-session exercises in budget development.


Workshop 4: Proposal Writing 

This event will be offered: TBD

Proposals demand a writing style different from most other types of academic writing. While the writing techniques can vary depending on the funder, there are some common formulas.  This workshop will help you identify these.  You will leave this workshop with a clear understanding of how to write your own proposal in a way that will convince reviewers that your project is a winner.

Pre-requisites: Participants will benefit from coming to the workshop with a project in mind.

What to expect:  This workshop includes collaborative analysis of writing samples.