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Hispanic Serving Institutions Education Grants

Program Descriptions

Program Number



Hispanic Serving Institutions Education Grants


Federal Agency




National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977, as amended, Section 1455, 7 U.S.C. 3241.






The objective of this program is to promote and strengthen the ability of Hispanic-Serving Institutions to carry out higher education programs in the food and agricultural sciences. These programs aim to attract outstanding students and produce graduates capable of enhancing the Nation's food and agricultural scientific and professional work force. Grants under this program will be awarded to: (1) support the activities of consortia of Hispanic-Serving Institutions to enhance educational equity for underrepresented students; (2) strengthen institutional educational capacities including libraries, curriculum, faculty, scientific instrumentation, instruction delivery systems, and student recruitment and retention, in order to respond to identified State, regional, national, or international educational needs in the food and agricultural sciences; (3) attract and support undergraduate and graduate students from underrepresented groups in order to prepare them for careers related to the food, agricultural, and natural resource systems of the United States, beginning with the mentoring of students at the high school level and continuing with the provision of financial support for students through their attainment of a doctoral degree; and (4) facilitate cooperative initiatives between two or more Hispanic- Serving Institutions, or between Hispanic-Serving Institutions and units of State government or the private sector, to maximize the development and use of resources, such as faculty, facilities, and equipment, to improve food and agricultural sciences teaching programs.


Types of Assistance

Project Grants.


Uses and Use Restrictions

Funds may be used to support one or more of the following target areas or additional target areas as identified in the annual program announcement: Curricula design; materials development; library resources; faculty preparation and enhancement for teaching; instruction delivery systems; scientific instrumentation for teaching; student experiential learning; and student recruitment and retention.


Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Hispanic serving institutions are eligible to receive funds under this program. "Hispanic serving institutions" means an institution of higher education which, at the time of application, has an enrollment of undergraduate full-time equivalent students that is at least 25 percent Hispanic students, and which (1) admits as regular students only persons having a certificate of graduation from a school providing secondary education, or the recognized equivalent of such certificate; (2) is a public or other nonprofit institutions accreditted by a nationally recognized accrediting body; and (3) is legally authorized to provide a program of education beyond the secondary level for which a 2-year associate, baccalaureate, or higher degree is awarded. Applications may be submitted by, and awards may only be made to, public or other non-profit Hispanic-Serving Institutions as defined in the definitions section of this solicitation. For the purposes of this program, the individual branches of a State university system or public system of higher education that are separately accredited as degree granting institutions are treated as separate institutions eligible for awards. Accreditation much be by an agency or association recognized by the Secretary, U.S. Department of Education. Institutions also must be legally authorized to offer at least a two-year program of study creditable toward an associate's or bachelor's degree. Separate branches or campuses of a college or university that are not individually accreditted as degree granting institutions are not treated as separate institutions. To be eligible for competitive consideration for an award under this program, a Hispanic-Serving Institution muc at the time of application: (1) certify that it has an enrollment of undergraduate full-time equivalent students that is at least 25 percent Hispanic students; and (2) provide assurances that not less than 50 percent of the institution's Hispanic students are low-income individuals as defined in the definitions section of this solicitation.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Hispanic serving institutions, as identified above, are eligible to receive funds under this program.


Each prospective grantee institution must furnish the information and assurances specified in the proposal solicitation and/or the administrative provisions for the program once they are developed. These materials will be available from the CSREES, Office of Extramural programs, at (202) 401-5050. This program is excluded from coverage under OMB Circular No. A-87.


Application and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

To assist CSREES in preparing for the review of proposals, institutions planning to submit proposals may be requested to complete Form CSREES-711, "Intent to Submit a Proposal," provided by CSREES in the grant application package. CSREES will determine annually if "Intent to Submit a Proposal" forms will be requested. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure

Formal proposals should be submitted to the CSREES, Office of Extramural Programs, in accordance with instructions provided in the program announcement. The program announcement will be published in the Federal Register.

Award Procedure

Proposals are reviewed and evaluated by CSREES staff with the assistance and advice of a peer panel of scientists, educators, representatives from the private sector, and representatives from other Federal agencies. Proposals will be supported in order of merit to the extent permitted by available funds.


Please contact the program contact listed in the Information Contacts or Headquarters Office section below.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

From 180 to 220 days.





Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

CSREES encourages and may require nonfederal matching support under this program and will disclose any matching requirements or incentives for providing matching funds in its annual program announcement.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

From 1 to 3 years.


Post Assistance Requirements


Quarterly financial reports, annual progress reports, final financial reports, final summary progress reports, and other reports as specified in the grant terms and conditions.


In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A- 133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133.


Grantees are expected to maintain separate records for each grant to ensure that funds are used for the purpose for which the grant was made. Records are subject to inspection during the life of the grant and for 3 years thereafter.


Financial Information

Account Identification



FY 07 $5,686,986; FY 08 est $5,364,480; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

$25,000 to $75,000. This is a newly funded program, average not yet determined.


Program Accomplishments

One of our-year instituveloped an academically rigorous internship program in the field of agricultural conservation, and then used the program as a recruitment tool to attract Hispanic students. A community college developed curriculum leading to a college certificate in water technology that addresses a statewide need for qualified technicians in the critical fields of water conservation and wastewater management.


Regulations, Guidelines and Literature

Applicable regulations will be outlined in the program announcement and/or the administrative provisions for the program once they are developed, and in the terms and conditions of any resulting grant award. Applicable regulations will include but not be limited to: 7 CFR Part 3015, USDA Uniform Administrative Regulations; 7 CFR Part 3019, USDA Uniform Administrative Requirements for Grants and Agreements with Institutions of Higher Education, Hospitals, and Other Nonprofit Organizations; 7 CFR part 3017, Government wide Debarment and Suspension and Drug-free Workplace Requirements; 7 CFR part 3018, New Restrictions on Lobbying; and 7 CFR part 3052, USDA implementation of OMB Circular No. A-133 (revised June 24, 1997) regarding audits of States, local governments, and nonprofit organizations.


Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

Not applicable.

Headquarters Office

USDA, CSREES, Multicultural Alliances, Science and Education Resources Development, Room 3240 Waterfront Centre, Washington, DC 20250-2251. Telephone: (202) 720-1254.

Web Site Address


Related Programs

10.217, Higher Education Challenge Grants
10.220, Higher Education Multicultural Scholars Program
10.210, Food And Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate Fellowship Grants
10.226, Secondary And Two-Year Postsecondary Agriculture Education Challenge Grants


Examples of Funded Projects

The Agriculture Education Implementation Outreach Project; Developing Freshman's Interest in Agricultural Research and Careers; The Integration of Research Internships into the Undergraduate Life Sciences Curriculum; Enhancement of Genetics Lab Teaching Through Agricultural Biotechnology Research; and Bridges to Careers as Urban Environmentalists.


Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Criteria are expected to include the following: (1) The likelihood that the project will have a substantial impact upon and advance the quality of higher education in the food and agricultural sciences higher education by strengthening institutional capacities to meet clearly delineated needs; (2) the soundness of the proposed approach, including objectives, procedures, timetable, evaluation and dissemination plans, and partnerships and collaborative efforts; (3) the institution's commitment to the project and the adequacy of institutional resources available to carry out the project; (4) the qualifications and the adequacy of the key personnel who will carry out the proposed project; (5) the extent to which the total budget adequately supports the project and is cost effective; and (6) the degree to which the proposal complies with the application guidelines and is of high quality.


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