Educational Partnership Program

To continue development of a program aimed at increasing research and educational partnerships between NOAA and Minority Serving Institutions.

Partnerships are achieved through collaboration with NOAA Cooperative Science Centers in atmospheric, oceanic, environmental sciences, environmental technology,
and remote sensing.

An Environmental Entrepreneurship Program has been implemented to support restoration projects in environmentally depleted zones and program development in NOAA-related sciences at minority serving institutions.

Agency - Department of Commerce

The Department of Commerce fosters and promotes the nation's economic development and technological advancement through vigilance in international trade policy, domestic business policy and growth, and promoting economic progress at all levels.

Program Accomplishments

NOAA funded four Cooperative Science Centers established at minority institutions in the areas of atmospheric, oceanic and environmental sciences and remote sensing. In addition, NOAA funded proposals in support of environmental restoration and high school training in the full range of natural and social sciences that support the agency's mission. To date, NOAA has hired 24 students from underrepresented communities in FTE positions since the program began in FY 2001. Twelve of these hires are Ph.D., and twelve are MS students. In addition, 15 Ph.D., 69 MS and 192 BS degree students have graduated from the designated Cooperative Science Centers with degrees in NOAA related sciences. There are currently 79 Ph.D. 100 MS and 223 BS students in training at the Science Centers sponsored by NOAA's Educational Partnership Program with Minority Serving Institutions.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Funds may be used to support a distinguished professor, research, development programs and students undertaking course work and/or research in NOAA related sciences at minority serving institutions.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Applicants are defined as qualified minority serving institutions based on the 2003 United States Department of Education definition of minority serving institutions.

Non-minority institutions may also participate in this program when partnered with a minority serving institution.

Institutions applying to be considered a designated Cooperative Science Center in atmospheric, oceanic and environmental sciences, environmental technology and remote sensing must have a graduate program in the respective category.

Beneficiary Eligibility

The benefits to the Nation are an increased number of academic institutions capable of providing services and products in support of the agency's mission to describe and predict changes in the environment, and to conserve and manage the nation's coastal and marine resources to ensure sustainable economic opportunities. Collaboration among NOAA and academic institutions will not only increase the number of trained professionals in the NOAA related sciences, it will also lead to a larger number of institutions participating in collaborative research and co-management of the nation's natural resources with State, local and tribal governments.


Applicants are required to satisfy all DoC/NOAA standards and regulations, including routine and special terms and conditions, for financial assistance programs application and conduct. Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-21 for educational institutions.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination


This program is excluded from coverage under E.O.


Application Procedures

Submission of an application package which includes the Standard Form SF-424 Application for Federal Assistance, SF-424A Budget Information Non-Construction Programs, SF-424B Assurances Non-Construction Programs, statement of work, budget and supporting details, and CD-511 Certifications Regarding Debarment, Suspension and Other Responsibility Matters, Drug Free Workplace Requirements, and Lobbying must be used when applying for Federal funds. This program is subject to the provisions of 15 CFR Part 14.

Award Procedures

Awards are made on the basis of proposal evaluation, technical review and administrative review.


Applications for funding must be received by NOAA Educational Partnership Program, at least 45 days following the announcement in the Federal Register.


15 U.S.C. 1540, Executive Orders 13256, 13230 13021 and 13339.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Approval time is anticipated to range from 90 to 150 days, which includes processing of the award through NOAA Research, NOAA and DoC financial assistance functions.




Cooperative activities are generally approved on an annual fiscal year basis, but may be continued for up to five years, subject to approved time frame, program development plan, satisfactory progress, and availability of funds.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements


Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

From one to five years with funding approved annually.

Post Assistance Requirements


Periodic progress and financial reports are required.

However, the reporting frequency may be changed to be more or less frequent progress reports should summarize work accomplished and explain situations where expected work has not been completed.

Financial reports must indicate use of funds during the semi-annual period.

Final reports are due ninety days after expiration of the award.


Recipients will be subject to the provisions of the Single Audit Act Amendments of l996 and revised OMB Circular A-133, "Audits of States and Local Governments and Nonprofit Organizations".


Financial records and support documents and all other records, i.e., property, performance, work products, patents etc. pertinent to the agreement shall be maintained for a period of three years from the date on which the final expenditure report is submitted.

Financial Information

Account Identification



(Grants; Cooperative Agreements) FY 07 $14,400,000; FY 08 est not available; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

$20,000 to $2,500,000 per year.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

For cost principles, see OMB Circular No. A-21, "Cost Principles for Educational Institutions". For grants administration requirements, see 15 CFR Part 14, "Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and Other Nonprofit Organizations".

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office


Headquarters Office

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Educational Partnership Program, Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Education Partnership Program, 1315 East-West Highway, SSMC 3, Room 10600, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Telephone: (301) 713-9437. Attn: Jacqueline J. Rousseau.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Proposals are subject to a review process taking into consideration the applicant(s) Performance Plan, research plans, scientific merit, investigator's qualifications, cost and available funds. Proposals must undergo a rigorous technical review and comply with all OMB, DoC and NOAA grant policies and procedures. Specific information about the selection process will be included in the solicitation.

One of the most significant challenges to social entrepreneurship and innovation is ensuring a diversity of approaches and participants in the movement. To truly deliver meaningful social change the leaders of the effort must share perspectives of the challenges faced by communities across the U.S. that can most appropriately come from members of those communities. Ashoka, through its All America initiative seeks to increase the diversity of social entrepreneurship practitioners.

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