Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon

The grants team is primarily responsible for facilitating development and submission of government grants, including proposals to federal, state, and local agencies. Here is a sampling of some of our successes: funded grants. Those interested in pursuing a specific government grant should contact the Grants Office directly.

The Grants Office works on grant proposals to federal, local, and state funding sources as well as to private and corporate foundations. Faculty and staff interested in pursuing a grant should contact the Grants Office and complete the Grant Needs Summary Survey.

While the level of support provided by the Grants Office staff varies depending on the project, the grants team typically offers the following services.

Click on a service for a more thorough description.

Researching Funding Opportunities

Grants Office staff members continuously research funding opportunities that meet PCC’s grant-seeking priorities. The office is responsible for alerting appropriate administrators and faculty of grant opportunities.

Ensuring Project Fit with Grant Opportunity

The Grants Office is charged with analyzing project ideas and ensuring that they match requirements outlined in the agency’s request for proposals (RFP), or grant guidelines. PCC’s Executive Staff review proposed project concept papers and rely on guidance from the Grants Office to decide whether to pursue a project. Before making recommendations to the Executive Staff, the Grants Office carefully analyzes details of project ideas and grant opportunities based on several criteria. These include: the ratio of College benefit to the cost of developing and administering the project; the amount of allowable indirect revenue; conversations with other grant development professionals and agency program officers; analysis of successful proposals; the funding history of the agency/program and the rate of community college funding; the ability of the department to achieve required objectives; and the likelihood of sustainability once grant funding ends. 

Developing Relationships with Agencies / Program Officers

Relationships with funding agencies are a critical element of creating winning proposals. Many private foundations discourage proposal submission without prior conversation with a staff member. Relationships with program officers from federal agencies help guide development of successful proposals. Discussions with these officials can reveal the types of projects a particular agency is looking for or the kinds of activities typically discouraged. The Grants Office leads development of these relationships with government agencies as staff are trained and experienced in asking strategic questions that elicit the most information. The PCC Foundation takes the lead in developing relationships with foundation program officers. This leadership prevents duplicate calls to program officers or foundation staff, who prefer a single point of contact.

Facilitate Grant Process / Grant Teams

The Grants Office staff facilitates the grant process from conceptualization to final proposal submission. This most often occurs on government grants, particularly large federal proposals, and involves the work of a grant team comprised of College faculty, staff, and administrators, and community partners with a stake in the project outcomes. Grants Office staff members facilitate development of a Grant Needs Summary, coordinate grant team meetings and efforts, discuss project ideas and questions with program officers, determine data and research needs in collaboration with PCC’s Institutional Research department, develop objectives and a budget, write proposal drafts, incorporate comments from grant team reviews of drafts, submit a final proposal for review by the grant team and the appropriate PCC Executive Officer, gather signatures, and ensure timely submission of a competitive grant proposal.

Proposal Writing and Editing

The Grants Office staff is highly skilled in presenting information in a manner that is compelling to proposal reviewers. For most government grants, Grants staff members write the proposals and/or edit sections written by grant development team members. The Grants Office reviews and edits all proposals to government agencies, including those not written by the grants staff, often asking tough questions that reviewers are likely to consider. The Grants Office manages funds to support faculty participation in major grant development and writing. Grants staff members assist with writing and editing private foundation proposals as appropriate and as time permits. 

Manage Approval and Review Process

Grants at PCC are developed via a carefully planned approval and review process. The Grants Office coordinates all approval and review procedures for government grants and collaborates with the PCC Foundation to follow the process for private and corporate foundation proposals. Grants staff also collaborate with PCC’s Contract and Grant Accounting department to ensure all grant financial requirements, such as matching funds, are met and are achievable. College accountants review final grant budgets for accuracy as well.

Coordinate Final Submission

The Grants Office coordinates final submission of all grants. This ensures that all grant forms are accurately completed; all requested supporting information, such as fiscal reports or 501c(3) documentation, are included; the PCC approval process is followed; and deadlines are met. All appropriate supervisors and executive officers must sign the Cabinet Review Summary prior to submission.

Grant Management

For new grant awards, the Grants Office, in collaboration with Contract and Grant Accounting, will conduct a Grant Orientation for the Project Director and grant staff.  The Post-Award Grant Officer is available to assist PCC Project Directors with various grant management activities. Support is available to Project Directors on interpreting funding guidelines, researching rules and regulations, offering advice on communicating with the funder’s program officer, resolving problems/concerns and providing feedback on reports. 

Grant Management Assistance Available:
  • providing feedback and editing grant reports, correspondence and documentation
  • assisting in preparing for site visits or audits
  • finding solutions for grant management problems
  • reminding collaborators of their commitments to the grant
  • recommending potential improvements for grant oversight
  • researching grant management rules and regulations
  • reducing compliance issues
  • providing advice on grant management issues
  • conducting grant management reviews

Contact the Post-Award Grant Officer to request assistance.

How we set priorities

The College places a priority on grants that support the indirect costs of running a grant, i.e. funds that support human resources, accounting, grant development, office space and utilities, etc. The Grants Office focuses on government grants but works closely with the PCC Foundation to identify private and corporate funding. The Grants Office is more likely to work on private or corporate foundation proposals when the grant request is large (over $30,000), there is an established relationship between PCC and the funder, the grant is to a national foundation, indirect costs are permitted, and the grant meets our grant-seeking priorities. 

Click on a priority to get more detailed information about it.

1. Increasing disadvantaged/underserved populations' access to and success in higher education.

  • Focus on limited English speaking, academically at-risk students and students of color
  • Support academic persistence, completion, graduation and goal attainment
  • Student support services and infrastructure necessary for student success
  • Focus on Developmental Education and pre-college

2. Diversity

  • Developing diversity in our student body, faculty and staff
  • Programs and services designed to enhance and/or support diversity
  • Advancing intercultural competence and deepening comparative knowledge of peoples and cultures

3. Economic, Workforce and Community Development

  • Educating, training and retraining the workforce (includes career and technical education programs, workforce development programs, incumbent workers, etc.)
  • Focus on high tech (includes infusion of technology into industries previously considered low tech, high-tech manufacturing, tech support, emerging technology, etc.), healthcare, "green" and other high-growth high-demand industries
  • General worker preparation
  • Support local economic and community development efforts through education and training

4. Sustainability

  • "Green" curriculum infusion
  • Developing existing and emerging renewable energy credentials and jobs
  • Supporting green bond building investments and services

5. Technology

  • Improving/upgrading technology infrastructure
  • Curriculum redesign (solving course access or achievement issues with technology)
  • Respond to emerging technology needs