Minority Science and Engineering Improvement

To (1) Effect long-range improvement in science and engineering education at predominantly minority institutions and (2) increase the participation of underrepresented ethnic minorities, particularly minority women, in scientific and technological careers.

Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

(1) A project is providing state-of- the-art training to minority students in field and laboratory studies dealing with water quality, and educating students on the benefits of using an interdisciplinary approach to solving environmental problems.

(2) A project has a summer science program designed to improve access of pre-college (8th and 9th grade) minority students to careers in science and engineering.

Integrated, hands-on curriculum in biology, physical science, mathematics, and computer technology is offered.

(3) A project is a consortium of five minority serving community colleges across the nation and two engineering schools whose purpose is to share resources and strategies in order to increase the number of bilingual engineers and strengthen the educational pipeline from pre-college through engineering school.

(4) One project is to establish a computer laboratory in science and mathematics.

Agency - Department of Education

The Department of Education ensures equal access to education and promotes educational excellence through coordination, management and accountability in Federal education programs. The Department works to supplement and complement educational efforts on all levels, encouraging increased involvement by the public, parents and students.

Program Accomplishments

For FY 2008, approximately 23 new awards and 50 continuation awards are expected to be made.

Uses and Use Restrictions

The program funds are generally used to implement design projects, institutional projects, and cooperative projects.

The program also supports special projects designed to provide or improve support to accredited nonprofit colleges, universities, and professional scientific organizations for a broad range of activities that address specific barriers that eliminate or reduce the entry of minorities into science and technology fields.

Grant funds may be used for paying costs necessary for improving and maintaining high quality science and engineering education programs in minority postsecondary institutions, including salaries and wages, equipment and instructional materials and supplies, travel related to the project activities, faculty development, and other direct and indirect costs.

This program is subject to non-supplanting requirements and must use a restricted indirect cost rate which is referenced under 34 CFR 76.564-76.569.

For assistance call the Office of the Chief Financial Officer/Indirect Cost Group on 202-708-7770.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Private and public nonprofit accredited institutions of higher education that award baccalaureate degrees; and are minority institutions; public or private nonprofit institutions of higher education that award associate degrees, and are minority institutions that have a curriculum that includes science or engineering subjects; and enters into a partnership with public or private nonprofit institutions of higher education that award baccalaureate degrees in science or engineering.

Applications may also be submitted by nonprofit science-oriented organizations, professional scientific societies, and institutions of higher education that award baccalaureate degrees, that provide a needed service to a group of minority institutions; or provide in-service training for project directors, scientists, and engineers from minority institutions; or consortia of organizations, that provide needed services to one or more minority institutions, the membership of which may include: institutions of higher education which have a curriculum in science and engineering; institutions of higher education that have graduate or professional programs in science or engineering; research laboratories of, or under contract with the Department of Energy; private organizations that have science and engineering facilities; or quasi-governmental entities that have a significant scientific or engineering mission.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Private or public accredited 4-year institutions of higher education whose total enrollments are predominantly (50 percent or more) American Indian; Alaskan Native; Black (not of Hispanic origin); Hispanic (including persons of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, and Central or South American origin); Pacific Islander; or any combination of these or other ethnic minorities who are underrepresented in science and engineering. Also, 2- year private or public accredited minority (see description of minority above) institutions that have curricula in science or engineering and have formed a partnership with a 4-year institution.


Institutions must provide the information necessary to establish their eligibility for participation in MSEIP. The data on enrollment furnished to the Office for Civil Rights to satisfy requirements for the "Fall Enrollment and Compliance Report of Institutions of Higher Education" are acceptable. Applications must be signed by the project director(s), the relevant department head(s), and by an authorized organizational official. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-87.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

The standard application forms as furnished by the Federal agency and required by OMB Circular No.

A-102 must be used for this program.

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedures

By submission of a formal application describing the planned project and proposed amount of the grant. See 34 CFR 637 and the specific program guidelines. Application forms are provided by MSEIP. This program is subject to the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-110.

Award Procedures

Panels of outside experts with knowledge of the fields covered by the application review all applications. Grants awards are recommended to the Secretary by the program office, in the order of merit.


Deadlines are published in the Federal Register.


Higher Education Act of 1965, Title III, Part E, Subpart 1, as amended.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

From 3 to 6 months.




Awards may be renewed for up to 2 years, renewals subject to the availability of appropriations.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

The program suggests that some institutional contribution be included as part of program support. However, by law, this program has no matching requirements.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

One to three years. Funds are awarded annually and disbursed as required. Renewals are subject to the availability of appropriations.

Post Assistance Requirements


The program requires interim performance reports from directors of projects having duration of more than one year at the end of each budget year's activities.

A substantive performance and financial report is required within 90 days upon completion of the project for all funded projects.


Compliance with standard Department of Education requirements.


Grantees are required to maintain standard programmatic and financial records. Records are subject to inspection during the life of the grant and for three years thereafter.

Financial Information

Account Identification



(Grants) FY 07 $8,730,820; FY 08 $8,577,487; and FY 09 est $8,577,487.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

For FY 2008, the range of awards is expected to be $25,000 to $300,000; the average award is expected to be $127,500.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

34 CFR 637 and the Education Department General Administrative Regulations.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office


Headquarters Office

Office of Postsecondary Education, Institutional Development and Undergraduate Education Service, Department of Education, Washington, DC 20202. Contact: Bernadette Hence. E-mail Address: bernadette.hence@ed.gov. Telephone: 202-219-7038.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Decisions are based primarily on the scientific and educational merits of described activities and conformance with the objectives of the program. Priority is given to applicants which have not previously received funding from the Minority Science Improvement Program and to previous grantees with a proven record of success, as well as to proposals that contribute to achieving balance among projects with respect to geographic region, academic discipline and project type.

Social Entrepreneurship

Heartsong Ceremonies for Today’s World

Danu  Fox founded Heartsong Ceremonies when she observed the majority of the population no longer go to any kind of formal celebration or gathering. Fox view ceremonies as observances where magic happens. Heartsong Ceremonies aim for just that.

More Federal Domestic Assistance Programs

Small Business Teaming Pilot Program | Soil Survey | Structural Fire Protection_Bureau of Indian Affairs Facilities | Family Violence Prevention and Services/Grants for Battered Women"s Shelters_Grants to States and In | ARRA Equipment to Enhance Training for Health Professionals |  Site Style by YAML | Grants.gov | Grants | Grants News | Sitemap | Privacy Policy

Edited by: Michael Saunders

© 2004-2024 Copyright Michael Saunders