The following are procedures for seeking external funding:

Sample External Application Guidelines:


For the detailed process, please click here.


Important Reminders for Applicants

  1. External funding paperwork requires considerable lead-time to process. Therefore, applicants planning to apply for external funds must submit their paperwork well in advance of targeted deadlines.
  2. Submitting a PAF implies that you have identified potential funding sources. It is the responsibility of the Principal Investigator or the Project Director to write the proposal and meet the requirements of the funding organization.
  3. Through the generous support of the Provost’s Office, incentive funds are available to Principal Investigators who submit grant proposals with total budgets of at least $20,000 and an indirect cost rate of at least 8%.  See the Sponsored Research and Programs Incentive Funds Guidelines and Application for more information.
  4. While it is University policy to recover indirect costs (also known as facilities and administrative costs) on all grants and contracts, Principal Investigators from UM-Flint are allowed to waive indirect costs on grants or contracts with total budgets under $10,000. To download a copy of the Indirect Cost Waiver Request, please click here (for the .pdf version) or here (for the Word version)
  5. To support the research efforts of tenure track faculty, the Office of Research can provide up to $500  in pre-submission travel support for meeting with agency program officers and/or attending pre-submission workshops.  Contact the Office of Research for more information.

External Funding Search Engines

Sponsored Program Information Network (SPIN)

The University of Michigan - Flint is a subscriber to the SPINPlus search system, a service of InfoEd International, Inc. Using the SPINPlus system, funding opportunity searches can be conducted in almost all fields of research and creative endeavor. The SPINPlus system also offers services such as automated e-mailed search results, a search service for possible research collaborators, and a CV formatting program. InfoEd provides an excellent online tutorial system for their search service, and the Office of Research offers SPINPlus tutorial workshops to faculty, staff, and students.

To conduct a SPIN search click here.

Community of Science (COS)

The COS search system can be used to locate funding opportunities for a wide array of scientific and R&D fields. The COS search system also offers services such as automated e-mailed search results, a search system for possible research collaborators, a CV formatting program, an online publishing system, and an updated list of conferences and calls for papers. A tutorial workshop of the COS search system is offered to faculty, staff, and students through the Office of Research.

To conduct a COS search click here.

The Foundation Center

Since 1956, the Foundation Center has helped thousands of grant seekers find information about grant makers and their funding interests. The Foundation Center SearchZone can assist you with your search for funding opportunities. A free look up tool called "Foundation Finder" is also available to provide basic profiles of 65,000 private and community foundations.

To search the Foundation Finder click here.


Federal Funding Agencies

National Science Foundation (NSF)

The National Science Foundation (NSF), an independent agency of the U.S. government, funds research and education in science and engineering. It does this through grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements to more than 2,000 colleges, universities, and other research and/or education institutions in all parts of the United States. The Foundation accounts for about 20 percent of federal support to academic institutions for basic research.

Each year, NSF receives approximately 30,000 new or renewal support proposals for research, graduate and postdoctoral fellowships, and math/science/engineering education projects; it makes approximately 9,000 new awards. These typically go to universities, colleges, academic consortia, nonprofit institutions, and small businesses. The Foundation frequently supports cooperative research between universities and industry and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

The functions of the NSF are carried out through FastLane; an interactive online program used to conduct official National Science Foundation business. The program consists of a variety of information modules regarding electronic proposal submission. For more information about FastLane, click here.

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) serves as a steward of medical and behavioral research for the Nation. Its mission is science in pursuit of fundamental knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems and the application of that knowledge to extend healthy life and reduce the burdens of illness and disability.

A large portion of NIH's budget supports individual research projects conceived of and conducted by scientists based at universities, medical, dental, nursing, and pharmacy schools, schools of public health, non-profit research foundations, and private research laboratories.

For NIH application information and forms, click here.

United States Department of Education (ED)

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) will provide approximately $2 billion in grant funding this year to help strengthen teaching and learning in colleges, universities, and other post secondary institutions. To support improvements in teaching and learning and to help meet special needs of schools and students in elementary and secondary education, the ED is delivering about $28 billion to states and school districts, primarily through formula-based grant programs.

For information regarding funding opportunities and applications, click here.

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) was created by Congress and established in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. Since then, it has awarded more than 120,000 grants to arts organizations and artists in all 50 states and the six U.S. jurisdictions. The NEA is the largest single funder of the nonprofit arts sector in the United States and this public investment in the Nation's cultural life has resulted in both new and classic works of art reaching every corner of America.

To apply for an NEA grant or to see the NEA guidelines and application Forms, click here. 

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is an independent federal agency created in 1965. It is the largest funder of humanities programs in the United States, providing grants for high-quality humanities projects in four funding areas: (1) preserving and providing access to cultural resources, (2) education, (3) research, (4) public programs.

NEH grants typically go to cultural institutions such as museums, archives, libraries, colleges, universities, public television, and radio stations, and to individual scholars.

To apply for an NEH grant or to see the NEH guidelines and application Forms, click here. 

*Important note: Application for funds from these sponsors must be done through

Michigan Funding Agencies

Michigan Grants Available List (MiGAL)

The Michigan Grants Available List search page helps you to search for federal, state, private, and other funding grant resources that relate to education and/or youth.

The Michigan Automated Grant Information Connection (MAGIC)

The Michigan Automated Grant Information Connection (MAGIC) website provides information regarding grants administered by the Department of Community Health and Michigan State Police.

Electronic Grants Administration and Management System (EGrAMS)

The Electronic Grants Administration and Management System (EGrAMS) Portal is a State of Michigan grant management application portal to aid the grantee community in the search for grant opportunities state-wide. There are over 250 grant programs offered by the State grant making agencies. allows one stop shop for organizations to access and find grants across State Departments.