Apply for a Grant

Grant proposals for the 2014-15 cycle were due on Wednesday, February 19, 2014. Applications for the 2015-16 grant cycle will be available online in December, 2014.

Any benefits-eligible USC employee, group of employees, unit, department, school or combination thereof is eligible to apply for a USC Good Neighbors grant. To be considered for funding, proposed programs must incorporate genuine university-community partnerships and support one or more of USC’s university-community initiatives.

University-Community Partnerships
Each year, USC Good Neighbors seeks to fund programs that involve a reciprocal partnership with at least one community-based, tax-exempt organization that operates within the USC Good Neighbors service areas.

Health Sciences Service Area: The area bounded by North Broadway to the north, Cesar Chavez Avenue to the south, Indiana Street to the east and Daly Street/Santa Ana (5) Freeway to the west.

University Park Campus Service Area: The area bounded by Santa Monica/10 Freeway to the north, Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to the south, Harbor/110 Freeway to the east, Western Avenue to the west.

University-Community Initiatives
Programs must be directed toward meeting one or more of USC’s university-community initiatives aimed at strengthening the neighborhoods surrounding the University Park and Health Sciences campuses.

Improving the quality of K-12 education, and the quality of life for children and their families, with special consideration for: Providing specific metrics to measure improvement in student achievement (e.g., increase in reading/writing/math proficiency level, improvements in test scores, application of learned concepts)
Improving health outcomes, particularly in the area of obesity and diabetes, and providing specific metrics for measuring improvement (e.g., weight loss, changes in behaviors, changes in perceptions)
Improving community safety through community policing or other initiatives, with special consideration to proposals that address community safety through peace building, peacemaking, dispute resolution, mediation and similar means
Promoting economic development, including entrepreneurial stimulation, neighborhood beautification and employability enhancement for local residents
Supporting job creation, encompassing training and small business development and including but not limited to a focus on workforce training, entrepreneurship development, accessing capital and securing job contracts

Additional Criteria
Additional criteria used for selecting grant recipients and determining awards are at the discretion of the grant review committee. Such determinations are not subject to review by any other party.

How to Apply
The USC partner in the university-community collaboration is responsible for preparing and submitting the USC Good Neighbors proposal online through the Common Grant Application website, beginning in December 2015.

Information Sessions
USC Good Neighbors grant proposal information sessions will be held at the HSC and UPC. Please visit this page in December 2014 for updates.

USC Good Neighbors Office Hours

USC Community House, 2801 South Hoover Street, in January 14 and February 2015.

Please call 213-743-4514 or email for questions, or ADA needs.

Elements of a Successful Proposal

  • Clearly stated objectives and goals
  • Evidence of a genuine partnership between USC and the community
  • Evidence of community input into the planning process
  • Provisions for impact and visibility, including target population and number affected
  • An implementation plan
  • A plan for assessment of impact and evaluation of results
  • A plan for the future, including how the project will continue after USC Good Neighbors funding has expired
  • Proof that the community-based partner is a corporation in good standing with tax-exempt status
  • Evidence of use of USC Good Neighbors dollars to leverage other funding
  • Application and Budget Worksheets

Grant Review Process
The USC Good Neighbors grant review committee, composed of faculty and staff from both the University Park and Health Sciences campuses, evaluates all applications with respect to community impact, cost-effectiveness, volunteer involvement and measurable progress toward meeting one or more of USC’s university-community initiatives. As part of its evaluation process, the grant review committee may elect to interview USC partners whose proposals have advanced to the final round.. The grant period is one year: July 1 to June 30 annually.