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How to Apply for Federal Assistance
Writing a Winning Grant Proposal
Understanding the Federal Program Descriptions

Content provided by the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance
84.315 Capacity Building for Traditionally Underserved Populations

FEDERAL AGENCY:

OFFICE OF SPECIAL EDUCATION AND REHABILITATION SERVICES, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

AUTHORIZATION:

Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, Section 21, 29 U.S.C. 718b.
OBJECTIVES: Click here for help!
To enhance the capacity and increase the participation of historically Black colleges and universities, Hispanic serving institutions of higher education, and other institutions of higher education where minority enrollment is at least 50 percent, in competitions for grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements under the Rehabilitation Act, as amended.

TYPES OF ASSISTANCE:

Project Grants.
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USES AND USE RESTRICTIONS:

Grants are limited to support projects that assist individuals to compete for discretionary funds focusing on bringing larger numbers of minorities in the public rehabilitation profession and provide appropriate practitioner knowledge, role models, and sufficient manpower to address the clearly changing demography of vocational rehabilitation. Project results will focus on the recruitment of minorities into the field of vocational rehabilitation and related services.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

Applicant Eligibility:   States, public and nonprofit, agencies for- profit agencies, and organizations may apply.

Beneficiary Eligibility:   Historically Black colleges and universities; (2) Hispanics serving institutions of higher education; (3) Indian tribal colleges and universities (4) other institutions of higher education whose minority student enrollment is at least 50 percent; and (5) Indian Tribes.

Credentials/Documentation:   Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-87 for State and local governments. Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-21 for educational institutions.

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APPLICATION AND AWARD PROCESS:
Pre-application Coordination:   The standard application forms as furnished by the Department of Education 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 that the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedure:   Applications must be prepared and submitted in accordance with the notice published in the Federal Register. Contact the program office for more information.

Award Procedure:   All new applications are reviewed by a panel of at least three individuals. Each panel will generally include two or more nonfederal consultants with experience and training in the proposed area of training. Each panel will include a person with a disability and an individual from a minority background.

Deadlines:   Deadlines will be published in the Federal Register. Contact the program office for application deadlines and information.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time:   The range of approval/disapproval time is approximately 120 to 150 days following the application deadline.

Appeals:   Not Applicable.

Renewals:   Renewals are available only through the new application process. Projects with an approved multi-year project period may be continued based on the availability of adequate funds and an annual review of accomplishments to determine satisfactory performance.

ASSISTANCE CONSIDERATIONS:

Formula and Matching Requirements:   Not applicable.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance:   Projects generally may be supported for 1 to 5 years. Funds are granted on a 12-month basis. Renewals are subject to the availability of appropriations.

POST ASSISTANCE REQUIREMENTS:

Reports:   Annual financial and progress reports must be submitted as required by the grant award's terms and conditions.

Audits:   Audits must be conducted on a continuing basis or at scheduled intervals, usually once a year, but at least once every 2 years. Institutions of higher education and nonprofit organizations are subject to the audit requirements of OMB Circular No. A-133. In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 24, 1997), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $300,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program- specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $300,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133.

Records:   As required by EDGAR.

FINANCIAL INFORMATION:

Account Identification:   91-0301-0-1-506.

Obligations:   (Grants and Contracts) FY 01 $2,261,860; FY 02 est $2,558,320; and FY 03 est $2,869,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance:  
No Data Available.

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PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS:
Some program accomplishments include the following: (1) Extensive training on the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, the Americans With Disabilities Act, and other key disability legislation; (2) the establishment of State-wide consortia of public agencies and organizations to better coordinate the delivery of vocational rehabilitation and other related services to persons with disabilities from minority backgrounds; (3) sponsoring and co-sponsoring of national and regional conferences of rehabilitation providers such as the Consortia of Administrators for Native American Rehabilitation (CANAR) and others; (4) establishment of rehabilitation training programs at colleges and universities; (5) increase in the number of applications and funding of projects from minority institutions of higher education; (6) implementation of national satellite broadcasts to discuss rehabilitation with participants from institutions of higher education, rehabilitation State agencies, independent living centers, supported employment programs and other agencies and organizations involved in the administration of rehabilitation programs; and (7) careers in rehabilitation job fairs.

REGULATIONS, GUIDELINES, AND LITERATURE:

Education Department General Administrative Regulations. For more information contact the program office.

INFORMATION CONTACTS:

Regional or Local Office:   None.

Headquarters Office:  
Ellen Chesley, Department of Education, OSERS Rehabilitation Services Administration, 400 Maryland Ave., S.W., Washington, District of Columbia 20202-2649 Email: ellen.chesley@ed.gov Phone: (202) 245-7300.

Web Site Address:  
http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osers/rsa/index.html

EXAMPLES OF FUNDED PROJECTS:

This is a new program; examples are not available.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTING PROPOSALS:

The selection criteria contained in the Education Department General Administrative Regulations are used to evaluate this program.

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