(CLOSED) Hearst Foundation Grants

Sponsor Name: 
Hearst Foundations
Description of the Award: 

The Hearst Foundations are national philanthropic resources for organizations working in the fields of culture, education, health and social services. In addition, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation operates two programs, the United States Senate Youth Program and the Journalism Awards Program. Since inception, the Foundations have made over 22,200 grants to 6,300 organizations, totaling more than $1.4 billion in funds awarded.

Through its grantmaking, the Hearst Foundations support well-established nonprofit organizations that address significant issues within their major areas of focus—culture, education, health and social service—and that primarily serve large demographic and/or geographic constituencies. While accepting proposals in all of these areas, current emphases for the Foundation’s focus in Education this year are projects in Mental Health and Environmental or Agricultural Projects.

In each area of funding, the Foundations seek to identify those organizations achieving truly differentiated results relative to other organizations making similar efforts for similar populations. The Foundations also look for evidence of sustainability beyond their support.


The Hearst Foundations provide grants, typically in the $75,000-$150,000 range, with a project period of two to three years. The Foundations are only able to fund approximately 25% of all grant requests, of which about 80% is directed to prior grantees and about 20% is targeted for new grantees. In the recent past, 30% of total funding has been allocated to Education. Organizations with budgets over $10 million have received 80% of the funding in Education. Institutions receiving a grant must wait three years from the award start date before reapplying.

Interested PIs can review the Foundation's Awardee Recipient Database to review the nature of recent awards.

Funding Priorities in Mental Health

  • Types of Support:
    • Program, scholarship, capital and, on a limited basis, general and endowment support
  • Preference Will Be Given To:
    • Counseling and Psychological Services programming/operating support
    • Peer Counseling Programs
    • Community-facing services, especially those serving rural and/or underrepresented populations
    • Counselor Education programs, including scholarship support

Funding Priorities in Environment/Agriculture

  • Types of Support:
    • Program, capital, research, and, on a limited basis, endowment support
  • Preference Will Be Given To:
    • Development and/or delivery of high-quality agricultural education and training such as climate-smart agricultural practices and techniques, especially for farmers in rural communities
    • Development and/or delivery of high-quality environmental education programs for community members (e.g., K-12 students in either school or extracurricular settings, college students, adult learners)
    • Water research and/or conservation programs

For University Park and Commonwealth Campus applicants, if you plan to apply for this funding opportunity, you must contact: Jara Dorsey Lash, Associate Director, Foundation Relations (jed72@psu.edu). The internal deadline refers to the date drafts should be submitted through this site for Foundation Relations to review. If you would like to discuss your project, please contact Yan Lu to schedule with Jara.

Sponsor Final Deadline: 
Dec 07, 2022
OSVPR Application or NOI Instructions: 

Interested applicants should upload the following documents in sequence in one PDF file (File name: Last name_Hearst_2022) no later than 4:00 p.m. on the internal submission deadline:

1. Cover page (1 page, pdf):

  • Descriptive title of proposed activity
  • PI name, departmental affiliations(s) and contact information
  • Co-PI's names and departmental affiliation(s)
  • Names of other key personnel
  • Partner organizations, if applicable

2. Project Description (no more than two pages, pdf) identifying the project scope that addresses the goals for funding, results of prior evaluation, and what makes the program/research unique among other similar projects.

To be considered as a Penn State institutional nominee, please submit a notice of intent by the date provided directly below.
This limited submission is in downselect: 
Penn State may only submit a specific number of proposals to this funding opportunity. The number of NOIs received require that an internal competition take place, thus, a downselect process has commenced. No Penn State researchers may apply to this opportunity outside of this downselect process. To apply for this limited submission, please use this link:
OSVPR Downselect Deadline: 
Wednesday, October 12, 2022 - 4:00pm
Daniel Foster (AgSci)