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Applying for a Grant

How to Apply for a Grant

Have you identified a gap in service or performance at NOVA that grant funds might address? Do you see a funding opportunity that supports your unit’s mission or vision? If so, contact the Office of Grants and Sponsored Programs to talk about your idea. Complete a Pre-Proposal form (ask Grants) to help determine the best fit for the College and the program, and to provide a basis for the initial meeting. Be mindful of your timeline – large or complex proposals are often in development months in advance.


The grants staff will work with you to put together a proposal application, which includes a narrative and a budget, letters of commitment, and other attachments. Our staff will help you throughout the grant development process on the actual writing of the proposal or on editing a contributed draft submitted by multiple departments or partner organizations. We also bring together relevant departments and individuals to discuss project development and help you meet your proposal timeline.

Proposed project summaries and costs must go through an approval process which involves a transmittal form signed by relevant signatories (Dean, Provost, Grants, Finance and Budget) prior to your proposal submission.

The federal SF-424 budget form (ask Grants) consists of line items that present real costs. For example, personnel, fringe benefits, supplies, travel, equipment, consultants and other (postage, telephone, printing). All projects must include Indirect Costs, unless the funding agency does not support them. Grants staff can work with you to obtain information from human resources, finance and other departments on such items as personnel costs, workshop expenses, curriculum development and travel. 

The Office of Grants and Sponsored Programs reviews all proposals submitted on behalf of the College to ensure that all funding requests have been approved, follow the proper procedures, and prevent duplication.


Upon receiving a grant, the Grants Development staff will assist with ensuring that implementation conforms to all relevant policies and procedures, the funder guidelines, and the award letter. Financial management of the grant or contract is the responsibility of the project director/manager. The Office of Grants and Sponsored Programs assists project leaders in setting up and ongoing management of grant programs and operational budgets, and monitors administration of grant-sponsored projects to ensure compliance.

Please contact the Budget Office to obtain copies of NOVA Policies regarding pre- and post-award procedures.

Should you receive an award that involves sub-recipients, program staff will also need to become familiar with the Sub-recipient Proposal Assurance Form(link to NOVA Online Forms Library) and the Sub-recipients Certification Form.