The Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development (NERCRD) announces a regional competitive planning grants program. These grants are to help Northeast state Extension Services and Land Grand University (LGU) researchers doing engaged scholarship to expand the breadth and depth of their rural development outreach programming/engaged scholarship by facilitating collaboration between Northeast states.

Funding Levels

Up to $30,000 is available in three planning and/or pilot program grants up to $10,000 each. These are intended as seed grants to help a team prepare for larger grants or alternative funding sources, to do pilot program over multiple states, or to train-the-trainer in other states. These grants will cover travel and meeting costs for the project teams. Time and indirect costs will not be covered. Only actual expenses will be reimbursed with unused funds returning to the NERCRD grant pool. The funding will be available for a maximum of one year from the date of award notification.

Who can apply?

Extension or research faculty and staff of LGUs in the Northeast region from at least two states. Non-LGU professionals can also participate but the majority on each project must be LGU staff.

Who should be the PI?

Each of the states involved must have at least one co-PI with a LGU appointment. While the team will make consensus decisions, one LGU staff from a NE state must be named by the team to coordinate the effort and be the primary contact with NERCRD.

Can faculty/staff from outside NE states join the project?

Yes, if two or more NE states wish to adopt/adapt a program from another region, this is possible. If non-NE states would like NE programs, this is also possible, but there needs to be more NE states adopting/adapting the program than non-NE states.

Expected Deliverables

Expected deliverables should include one or more of the following:

Option 1: Major Funding Proposal of Transferring Programs. A major funding proposal to one or more agencies to implement the transfer/adaptation of a successful NE Community Rural Development Extension program or engaged scholarship effort from one state to one or more other NE states.

Option 2: Pilot Program Method of Transferring Programs: This is a pilot program in which Extension specialists or engaged scholarship staff in one state, with the knowledge and endorsement of staff in other states, deliver a successful program to audiences from (or in) several states, either in person or via the web. Scholarship which describes your project and its results and shares lessons learned in transferring a program between states in this fashion is required.

Option 3: Train-the-Trainer Method of Transferring Programs: The third method of transferring or adapting successful CRD programs between states is for staff in one state to train-the trainers in other NE states. Scholarship which describes your project and its results and shares lessons learned in transferring a program between states in this fashion is required.

Selection Criteria

The proposal should be an Extension program or engaged scholarship that contributes to one of the NERCRD's goals.

The proposal also should:

  • be consistent with the goals of competitive funding programs and/or show the potential for sustained funding through user fees or event sponsors;
  • address an important need in one or more other states in the region; and,
  • be realistic in terms of timetable and budget, with leveraged support from institutions.

In addition:

  • Programs to be transferred must be successful programs which have clearly defined goals and activities, documented success, at least two replications, educational materials, a research-based curriculum, and letters of recommendation from participants.
  • Team leaders should have demonstrated track record and team members' expertise should align with proposed activities.
  • Teams should have prior approval from direct supervisors, Extension Director and Experiment Station Director.

Application Submission Details

The proposal (one-inch margins and 12-point font) should include:

  • NERCRD Cover Page (see template in the templates packet available for download here)
  • Project Narrative: Four pages maximum with URL links for additional information. Should include:
    • description of the program to be transferred, including educational goals, research-base, major educational activities, target audience, outcomes and long-range impacts;
    • justification for the proposal relative to the NERCRD's goals, recipient states' needs, regional needs, and sustained external funding;
    • evidence of the program's success and how this has been documented, including number of replications and participation and formative or summative evaluations of the program; and,
    • activities to be engaged in by team members, role of members, and leveraging of NERCRD funding.
  • Budget and Budget Justification (see template in the templates packet available for download here)
  • Timeline for completion of the planning activities.
  • Institutional Approval Page (see template in the templates packet available for download here)
  • Appendices
  • Printed educational materials
  • Curriculum vitae of the PI and all Co-PIs (2 pages maximum per PI)
  • Description of expertise and role of other members with their titles, departments, address and emails (1/2 page per member)

Review Process

A technical review will be completed by an independent panel, composed of 3 members of the NERCRD Technical Advisory Committee and two CRD Extension specialists from outside the NE region. The Center's Board of Directors will provide input into the final selection and the recommended funding level.