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Grants to USA Agricultural IHEs for Projects Related to Human Sciences, Food, Natural Resources, and Agriculture

Capacity Building Grants for Non-Land Grant Colleges of Agriculture (NLGCA) Program


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) - National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)
CFDA Number: 10.326
Funding or PIN Number: USDA-NIFA-NLGCA-010248
Array ( )

Geographic Focus

Important Dates
Conference Date: 12/01/23
Deadline: 01/16/24 5:00 PM ET Save

Grant Description
Grants to USA non-land grant agricultural IHEs for projects related to human sciences, food, natural resources, and agriculture. Applicants are advised that required registrations must be completed prior to applying. Proposals addressing the national challenge to increase the number and diversity of students entering food and agriculture-related STEM disciplines are encouraged.

The purpose of this program is to assist NLGCA institutions in maintaining and expanding their capacity to conduct education, research, outreach/extension, and integrated activities relating to agriculture, renewable resources, and other similar disciplines. NLGCA institutions may use the funds to maintain and expand capacity:

  1. To successfully compete for funds from Federal grants and other sources to carry out educational, research, outreach/extension and integrated activities that address priority concerns of national, regional, state, and local interest;
  2. To disseminate information relating to priority concerns to:
    • interested members of the agriculture, renewable resources, and other relevant communities
    • the public
    • any other interested entity
  3. To encourage members of the agriculture, renewable resources, and other relevant communities to participate in priority education, research, outreach/extension and integrated activities by providing matching funds to leverage grant resources
  4. Through:
    • the purchase or other acquisition of equipment and other infrastructure (not including alteration, repair, renovation, or construction of buildings)
    • the professional growth and development of the faculty of the NLGCA Institution
    • the development of graduate assistantships.

Applications that address the national challenge to increase the number and diversity of students entering food and agriculture-related science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines are encouraged.

For additional program priorities, see

Grant Types:

  • Planning Activity/Conference: Applicants in this grant type may request funding to facilitate strategic planning session(s) required of faculty, industry, professional association, community leaders, or other necessary participants for the specific purpose of developing a formal plan leading to a subsequent submission of a collaborative grant.
  • Regular: This is an award instrument by which NIFA agrees to support a specified level of effort for a predetermined project period without the announced intention of providing additional support at a future date.
  • Collaborative: Collaborative grants support projects with at least one additional partner or a multi-partner approach. Collaborative grants should build linkages to generate a critical mass of expertise, skill, and technology to address education/teaching programs related to the food and agricultural sciences.
    • Joint Grants (Applicant + One or more partners). In a joint grant, the applicant executes the project with assistance from at least one additional partner.
    • Large-scale Comprehensive Initiatives (LCI) (Applicant + two or more partners). In an LCI Grant, the applicant executes the project with assistance from at least two additional partners. An LCI project differs from a Joint Project Proposal in project scope and impact. LCI Project Proposals must support a multi-partner approach to solving a major state or regional challenge facing the agricultural sciences at the postsecondary level. LCI Project Proposals are characterized by multiple partners (each providing a specific expertise) organized and led by a strong applicant with documented project management ability to organize and carry out the initiative.


  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria
Applicants for the NLGCA must meet all the requirements discussed in the RFA. Applications may only be submitted by a Non-Land Grant College of Agriculture (NLGCAs) certified as such by the NIFA at the time of application. A current list of NLGCA’s certified by NIFA can be found at the NLGCA List Resource webpage. Section 7102 of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 removed the opt-in, opt-out language that had previously required Hispanic Serving Agricultural Colleges and Universities (HSACU) and McIntire-Stennis Colleges and Universities to relinquish that status if they wanted to pursue NLGCA designation. There are no longer any such limitations. Award recipients may subaward to organizations not eligible to apply to this grants program, providing such organizations are necessary for the conduct of the project. All institutions certified as NLGCA prior to December 21, 2018, must reapply for certification and meet the new criteria for NLGCA certification contained in the Federal Register Notice.

In order for an institution to qualify as a NLGCA, it must be a public college or university offering a baccalaureate or higher degree in the study of agricultural sciences, forestry, or both, which is any of the 32 specified Areas of Study: Agricultural and domestic animal services; Agricultural and extension education services; Agricultural and food products processing; Agricultural business and management; Agricultural communication or agricultural journalism; Agricultural economics; Agricultural engineering; Agricultural mechanization; Agricultural production operations; Agricultural public services; Agriculture; Animal sciences; Applied horticulture or horticulture operations; Aquaculture; Equestrian/Equine Studies; Floriculture or floristry operations and management; Food science; Forest sciences and biology; Forestry; Greenhouse operations and management; International agriculture; Natural resource economics; Natural resources management and policy; Natural resources or conservation; Ornamental horticulture; Plant nursery operations and management; Plant sciences; Range science and management; Soil science; Turf and turfgrass management; Urban forestry; and Wood science and wood products or pulp or paper technology. If you are not sure if you are eligible to request NLGCA designation, please consult the NLGCA Eligibility Flow Chart.

For additional eligibility information, see

All duplicate or substantially similar proposals submitted in response to multiple RFAs for concurrent review will be excluded.

Pre-Proposal Conference
In this webinar, Non-Land-grant Colleges of Agriculture (NLGCA) program staff will provide an overview of the Fiscal Year 2024 Request for Applications for the Capacity Building Grants for Non-Land-grant Colleges of Agriculture funding opportunity.

Date and Time: Friday, December 1, 2023 at 2:00 pm EST


Pre-Application Information
Application Deadline: 5:00 P.M. Eastern Time, January 16, 2024

Applicants must apply to this RFA electronically via; no other method or response is accepted. New Users to must register early with prior to submitting an application.

Contact an AR prior to starting an application to assess the organization’s readiness to submit an electronic application.

NLGCA applicants may submit (as the lead applicant) any number of proposals in response to this RFA; however, each institution will be limited to a maximum of two grant awards as the lead (applicant) institution. Each institution may participate in any number of NLGCA-funded projects as a partner institution in any given year. However, an individual is limited to serve as Project Director for only one funded project in the FY competition.


View this opportunity on

For a list of relevant application documents, go to the Package tab (press Preview) on the link above.

Additional Funding Information

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants

Estimated Size of Grant
Average individual award range:
- Planning/Conference: $30,000
- Regular: $150,000
- Collaborative-Joint: $300,000
- Collaborative Large-scale Comprehensive Initiative (LCI): $750,000

Term of Contract
Grant Duration:
- Planning/Conference: 24-36 months
- Regular: 24-36 months
- Collaborative-Joint: 36-48 months
- Collaborative-Large-scale Comprehensive Initiative (LCI): 36-48 months

Contact Information
Program Contacts:

Michelle Schelske-Santos
National Program Leader
Division of Community and Education
(757) 378-8380

Donaven McLaurin
Program Specialist
Division of Community and Education
(601) 577-5672 Support: Online Support -
Telephone support: 800-518-4726 Toll-Free or 606-545-5035
Email support:
Self-service customer-based support: iPortal:

NIFA Support:

U.S. Postal Mailing Address:
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
U.S. Department of Agriculture
P.O. Box 419205, MS 10000
Kansas City, MO 64141-6205

Courier/Package Delivery Address:
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
United States Department of Agriculture
2312 East Bannister Road, MS 10000
Kansas City, MO 64141-3061

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