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Foundations

Overview 

A foundation is a non-governmental entity that is established with the purpose of making grants to other unrelated organizations.  Each foundation has their own rules and regulations when it comes to proposal submission and award management.

Proposal Guidance

Each foundation will have their own guidelines and instructions for proposal submission.  Please read the solicitation carefully to ensure all proposal requirements are being met.

The MSU Library has resources to assist with finding foundation funding.  See the following webpage for additional information: https://libguides.lib.msu.edu/grants.

Proposal Submission

Electronic Systems
Some foundations have their own electronic submission system. Typically the PI will prepare and submit the application in the electronic system. If the foundation requires the electronic proposal to be submitted by an Authorized Organization Official (AOR) or a Signing Official (SO) for the institution, then the proposal would be submitted by the Office of Sponsored Programs. Please work with OSP to make sure they have the proper access for the submission system.
Proposal Central
An electronic submission system that is used by some foundations to submit proposals.  Each foundation uses Proposal Central differently.  Please contact your OSP Proposal Team if you have questions.

If the foundation does not require the proposal to be authorized by an AOR/SO, a Proposal Development document should still be routed prior to the deadline to obtain approval to submit the proposal.

Budget Guidelines

The guidelines listed here are generally applicable to this sponsor. Please refer to the solicitation for any deviation to standard guidelines or specific requirements for a program.

Personnel

Salary
Salaries should be based on KC values unless a known increase/decrease is expected, salaries are usually escalated anywhere from 2-4%
Fringe
Fringe is based on Specific Identification (SI) rates, which are calculated in KC
Research Associate (Post Doc) Salary
Salaries should be based on KC values for current named employees.  The current minimum salary for a Post Doc can be found at this link.
Research Associate (Post Doc) Fringe
Fringe is based on Specific Identification (SI) rates.  Post Docs have a reduced SI rate due to a lower health care component.  They also typically do not become eligible for retirement until their 4th year of employment at MSU.  
Graduate Student Stipend
Stipend amounts should be based on college/department levels or HR levels
Graduate Student Fringe
Grad health is based on a flat rate.  The rate is calculated in KC, or can be found on the current Grad Fringe Chart on the SPA Fringe Benefit webpage.  For summer hourly work, 7.65% should be budgeted.
Undergraduate Labor
Usually based on hourly rates; see HR standard rates
Undergraduate Fringe
Fringe of 7.65% applied during the summer; fringe only applied during AY if student is not expected to be enrolled full time
Administrative Staff
Allowable per UG if justified and integral for the project, can be specifically identified with a project or activity, and are not also recovered as IDC; salaries and fringes should be based on KC values

Equipment

Allowable items ordinarily will be limited to research equipment not already available for the conduct of the work

Travel

Domestic
Includes U.S, Canada, Mexico, and U.S. possessions; justification should include the purpose of travel, destination, dates of travel (if known) or estimated number of days, and the number of individuals for each trip
Foreign
Travel outside of the above domestic locations; must enter names of countries and dates of visit; additional detail and breakdown is recommended

Other Direct Costs

Communications
Generally allowable if integral and allocable to the project
Computer Services/ADP
Justification should be based on the established computer service rates (Internal rates must be approved by Financial Analysis)
Conferences
Allowable when associated with the proposed work and must be necessary to accomplish project objectives or to disseminate results
Consultant Services
Generally allowable when reasonable in relation to the services rendered; must be outlined in the justification and information furnished on each individual's expertise, organizational affiliation, daily rate of compensation, and number of days expected for the project; line item may also include consultant's travel, if applicable
Equipment/Facility Rental
Generally allowable if integral and allocable to the project
Graduate Student Tuition & Fees
Should match the graduate student tuition chart; tuition should be prorated based on project dates; KC will apply appropriate inflation
Honoraria
May be allowable
Incentives
Generally allowable; incentives should not be so great as to coerce or unduly influence participation in the project
Materials & Supplies
Details and justification should be included for items requested to support the project
Meals/Refreshments
Allowable when integral and considered a necessary part of a conference (e.g. working meals where business is transacted); funds may be included, within reasonable amounts, for beverages to conference participants and attendees during periodic coffee breaks
Publication/Dissemination
Generally allowable
Service Charges/CORE Services
Should be based on Financial Analysis approved rates; quotes or other justification for how service rate was determined are helpful; if not provided to OSP at the time of budget review, quotes/justification should be kept on file by PI/research administrator
Subaward
Subaward budget, justification, scope of work, and commitment form must be on file internally; subaward budget and justification may need to be submitted with the proposal

Contingency
/Misc.

Unallowable

F&A

Many foundations and non-profits will not pay F&A costs, or they will only pay a reduced rate.  Generally, MSU will accept the foundation or nonprofit rate provided the Office of Sponsored Programs is given a copy of  their F&A policy, a link to their website stating their policy, or a letter/email from a senior official at the foundation/non-profit informing MSU of their policy. If the documentation is a letter/email from a senior official, it must clearly state the foundation/non-profit's policy and that it applies to all grant recipients. If the foundation/non-profit pays less than MSU’s full rate, then the rate charged will be based on total direct costs (TDC).

Cost Share

Only recommend including if required by the sponsor/solicitation

Compliance

Human Subjects

If the project includes human subject’s research, IRB approval will be required prior to account set-up.

Animal Subjects

If the project includes animal subjects, IACUC approval will be required prior to account set-up.

Conflict of Interest

Project-based Conflict of Interest disclosures are required for all key personnel prior to account set-up.

Award Guidance

Foundation awards include a wide range of terms and conditions.  Foundations occasionally have restrictive publication language, in an effort to protect donors and beneficiaries of services. Explanation and negotiation is often successful in resolving these issues. 

Subawards

Foundation subawards are drafted by OSP. Required documents include Subrecipient Commitment Form, budget, budget justification, Statement (or Scope) of Work, and a current financial audit. 

Prior Approvals

Foundations and the agreements set forth vary greatly in nature.  Please refer to the agreement for modifications that require agency prior approval. 

If you need assistance or clarification, please contact CGA Awards Group at awards@cga.msu.edu.

Reporting

Foundation agreements vary greatly in nature.  Please refer to the agreement for reporting requirements. 

If you need assistance or clarification, please contact CGA Reports Group at reports@cga.msu.edu.

Effort Reporting / Cost Share

Effort reporting is not required for non-federal awards. In cases where salaried cost share has been committed, MSU uses the effort reporting system for tracking and documentation. Non-salary cost share is documented through PI certified operating statements.

Effort Reporting

MSU effort reporting overview and FAQ’s can be found on the Sponsored Program Administration website at the following link: https://www.cga.msu.edu/PL/Effort/EffortReportingTools.aspx

Effort reporting instructions can also be located on the Sponsored Program Administration website: https://www.cga.msu.edu/PL/Portal/231/EffortReportingInstructionsEffortAdministrators

For additional questions and information, please contact the CGA Effort Reporting inbox at effortreporting@cga.msu.edu

Cost Share

Information on cost share can be found on the Sponsored Program Administration website at the following link: https://www.cga.msu.edu/PL/Portal/249/CostSharePolicy

In cases where salaried cost share has been committed, MSU uses the effort reporting system for tracking and documentation.  Non-salary cost share is documented through PI certified operating statements.

Record Retention

Refer to the solicitation or the award document for specific requirements. If not specified, see the following: https://www.cga.msu.edu/PL/Portal/403/RecordRetention.

Sponsor Resources

  • Proposal Central – an e-grantmaking website used by some foundations.
  • GuideStar – Searchable database for nonprofit data.

Forms and Templates

None at this time

Archives

None at this time

Category:     Subcategories: OSP, Policy, Proposal, Research

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