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 STEM Grant Opportunities for Community Colleges 

National Science Foundation Grant Solicitations

The Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program focuses on the education of technicians for the high-technology fields that drive our nation's economy. The program involves partnerships between academic institutions and industry to promote improvement in the education of science and engineering technicians at the undergraduate and secondary school levels. The ATE program supports curriculum development; professional development of college faculty and secondary school teachers; career pathways to two-year colleges from secondary schools and from two-year colleges to four-year institutions; and other activities. Another goal is articulation between two-year and four-year programs for K-12 prospective STEM teachers that focus on technological education. The program invites research proposals that advance the knowledge base related to technician education. The proposal deadline is October 5, 2017.

The Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE: EHR) program invites proposals that address immediate challenges and opportunities that are facing undergraduate STEM education, as well as those that anticipate new structures (e.g. organizational changes, new methods for certification or credentialing, course re-conception, cyberlearning, etc.) and new functions of the undergraduate learning and teaching enterprise. The IUSE: EHR program recognizes and respects the variety of discipline-specific challenges and opportunities facing STEM faculty as they strive to incorporate results from educational research into classroom practice and work with education research colleagues and social science learning scholars to advance our understanding of effective teaching and learning. Toward these ends the program features two tracks: (1) Engaged Student Learning and (2) Institutional and Community Transformation. Two tiers of projects exist within each track: (i) Exploration and Design and (ii) Development and ImplementationThe proposal deadline for Development and Implementation is January 11, 2017

The Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (S-STEM) program addresses the need for a high quality, well-educated science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce. Recognizing that financial aid alone cannot increase retention and graduation in STEM, the program provides awards to Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) to fund scholarships. The goals of the S-STEM program are: (1) To increase the recruitment, retention, student success, and graduation (including student transfer) of low-income academically talented students with demonstrated financial need who are pursuing associate, baccalaureate, graduate degrees in STEM and enter the STEM workforce or graduate programs in STEM. (2) To adapt, implement, and study models, effective evidence-based practices, and/or strategies that contribute to understanding how factors or existing high quality evidence-based practices affect recruitment, retention, student success, academic/career 4 pathways, and/or degree attainment (including student transfer) in STEM of low-income academically talented students with demonstrated financial need. (3) To contribute to the implementation and sustainability of effective evidence-based curricular and co-curricular activities (e.g., evidence-based practices; professional and workforce development activities) for low-income academically talented students with demonstrated financial need, pursuing undergraduate or graduate education, and entry into the workforce or graduate programs in STEM. The S-STEM program encourages collaborations among different types of partners: Partnerships among different types of institutions; collaborations of STEM faculty and institutional, educational, and social science researchers; and partnerships among institutions of higher education and local business and industry, if appropriate. Full proposals are due by March 29, 2017.

The “Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science” (NSF INCLUDES) initiative aims to strengthen the U.S. STEM workforce though improving collaborative efforts, increasing participation, and ensuring contributions of individuals from groups that have traditionally been underrepresented and underserved in the STEM enterprise. Designed as a multi-year program, NSF INCLUDES consists of three essential components currently under development: (1) NSF INCLUDES Design and Development Launch Pilots: Two-year pilot projects that explore the feasibility of bold, innovative ways for solving a broadening participation challenge in STEM. (2) NSF INCLUDES Alliances: NSF INCLUDES Alliances will leverage existing Design and Development Launch Pilots, programs, people, organizations, technologies, and institutions to catalyze NSF’s broadening participation investments, with each Alliance committed to collectively solving a specific set of objectives. (3) NSF INCLUDES Backbone Organization: The Backbone Organization will drive the following activities for all NSF INCLUDES Alliances over the lifecycle of the initiative: (a) providing a guiding vision and strategy; (b) developing a collaborative infrastructure to align NSF INCLUDES activities; (c) establishing shared models, measurement practices, and evaluation criteria; (d) building public will; (e) advancing policy; and (f) mobilizing funding. The preliminary proposal deadline is February 14, 2017. The full proposal deadline for project proposals is May 16, 2017.

The Partnerships for Innovation (PFI) program within the Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships (IIP) is an umbrella for two complementary subprograms, Accelerating Innovation Research (AIR) and Building Innovation Capacity (BIC). Overall, the PFI program offers opportunities to connect new knowledge to societal benefit through translational research efforts and/or partnerships that encourage, enhance and accelerate innovation and entrepreneurship. The PFI: AIR-TT solicitation serves as an early opportunity to move previously NSF-funded research results with promising commercial potential along the path toward commercialization. Projects are supported to demonstrate proof-of-concept, prototype, or scale-up while engaging faculty and students in entrepreneurial/innovative thinking. Eligible applicants include universities and two- and four-year colleges (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in, the US acting on behalf of their faculty members. The most recent deadline for this solicitation was October 11, 2016.

Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) in Engineering and Computer Science supports active long-term collaborative partnerships between K-12 Science, Technology, Engineering, Computer and Information Science, and Mathematics (STEM) teachers and community college and university faculty and students to bring knowledge of engineering or computer and information science and engineering as well as technological innovation to pre-college/community college classrooms. The goal of these partnerships is to enable K-12 STEM teachers and community college faculty to translate their research experiences and new knowledge gained in university settings into their classroom activities. The most recent deadline for this solicitation was November 1, 2016.

The Partnerships for Innovation: Building Innovation Capacity Program (PFI: BIC) supports academe-industry partnerships, which are led by an interdisciplinary academic research team collaborating with a least one industry partner.  PFI-BIC is designed to carry out research to advance, adapt, and integrate technology into a specified, human-centered smart service system, with the goal of achieving transformational benefits, satisfying a real need by making an existing service system smart(er), or by spurring the creation of an entirely new smart service system. There is a heavy emphasis on the quality, composition, and participation of the partners, including their appropriate contributions. These partnerships should focus on the integration of technologies into a specified human-centered service system and community colleges are eligible to apply. Click here for more information. The most recent deadline for this solicitation November 19, 2016. 

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