Foundation Relations provides multiple services to senior officers, deans, faculty, researchers and administrators.
This flow chart illustrates how the Office of Foundation Relations generally works with faculty in developing foundation proposals.
For those projects that have been designated as priorities by the president, the provost, dean, department head, or head of a lab or center, we can:
- Help to develop a project from idea to fundable program
- Conduct prospect research to identify foundations that are potential matches for a project
- Provide background information on the history of MIT’s relationship with specific foundations and devise strategies for approaching them
- Identify relevant program officers at foundations and facilitate contact with them
- Set up schedules and travel for meetings with foundation representatives
- Provide assistance in drafting and editing proposals
- Raise awareness of a project’s funding needs among other Resource Development staff on campus, e.g. Office of Corporate Relations, Office of Leadership Giving, etc.
- Connect those who are doing similar or related work on campus and brainstorm about ways to collaborate with others on related projects
- Provide assistance in negotiating terms of an award
- Maintain contact with foundations, both during and after the grant-making cycle, and keep administrators and faculty informed about new developments regarding proposals
For other non-priority projects, Foundation Relations staff can do the following:
- Provide an overview of foundation fundraising and information about recent trends and developments in grant-making
- Share information about specific foundations
- Provide guidance on the resources available to become familiar with private foundations
- Inform relevant areas on campus when there are requests for proposals (RFPs) from foundations
- Review and provide feedback on draft proposals
- Assist with the procedures involved in submitting a proposal, including the submission of required supporting institutional documents
- Track information about an award, provide reminders when reports are due, and provide advice regarding stewardship of grants
In each of these instances, Foundation Relations staff work closely with School Development Officers (SDOs). Note: SDOs have three primary roles: assist the deans of MIT’s schools with all of their resource development activities; manage relationships with and cultivate gifts from major donors interested in supporting specific school-based initiatives; and serve as liaisons from each of the schools to all units of central Resource Development, including the Offices of Philanthropic Partnerships, Leadership Giving, Planned Giving, Corporate Relations, and Foundation Relations. SDOs can play an especially helpful role in devising strategies for addressing the funding priorities of schools and individual departments.
If you would like more information about the foundation fundraising process, we suggest that you first contact your SDO to discuss your project before contacting one of the Foundation Relations staff to schedule an appointment.