Grants Development Office
The Grants Development Office provides assistance to faculty, staff and administrators in securing funding for special projects, research and general operating expenses related to the overall mission and vision of Triton College. The office works collaboratively with all departments to identify and pursue external funding opportunities that will help to develop, enhance and enrich the educational programs and services available to Triton students and community at-large.
The Grants Development Office is located in the E Building, Room 317.
Grants Development Goals:
- Foster an environment of transparency, cohesiveness and continuity to ensure cross departmental collaboration and communication
- Engage Triton College in funding opportunities with local, state, federal, corporate and private sectors
- Facilitate the proposal development process by working collaboratively with faculty, staff and administrators to produce successful proposals
- Provide workshops and trainings on grants and the grant making process campus-wide
- Grant reporting, and development of program material for submission to funding agencies
Grants Management Process - Pre-Award
Effective September 1, 2014
At Triton College, fundraising and grants development is a community-wide and collaborative endeavor. Administration, faculty, students and staff are encouraged to participate in supporting the College's mission and vision for the future. This conveys a universal and cohesive message of institutional pride and growth. However, the Grants Development Office will be the gate keeper and centralized area for which all grant applications and proposals will be endorsed for submission prior to final approval. This Policies and Procedures document is a guide for all grants-related activities to achieve success across the campus.
In order to maximize success, avoid duplication of effort, and assure adherence to Triton's professional priorities and policies, the Grants Development Office will serve as the coordinating agent for all Triton College grant proposals and applications.
- Before a Triton College employee initiates a grant proposal of any kind, regardless of the dollar amount requested, he or she must contact the Grants Development Office and complete a Grant pre-proposal form. This form must be completed prior to full preparation of grant proposals. As part of the pre-proposal process, grant opportunities under consideration must receive the signed approval of the employee's direct supervisor, Executive Director of the Grants Development Office and associate vice president of the area.
- The Office of the Vice President of the area must endorse/sign all Grant Pre-proposal forms. Once the form has been signed and authorized to proceed to the next phase (proposal development and submission) it may also become an agenda item (for informational purposes) at the President's Cabinet meeting. This helps to ensure transparency, accountability and awareness about prospective funding opportunities for the College. The grant pre-proposal form must be returned to the Grants Development Office no later than 7 days of being approved or declined from the Office of the Vice President.
- Upon receipt of the grant pre-proposal form, the Grants Development Office's grant writer will establish a timeline with Project Directors and/or Deans to facilitate proposal completion.
- Information regarding grant personnel must be established once the grant pre-proposal form is approved. The project director will work with the grant writer and Human Resources Department to develop a detailed job description where required (if one does not exist) to establish salary level and calculate benefits. Human Resources may review personnel information in the completed proposal before final submission.
- The approval of the vice president of the respective area must be received before any department or program in the college may enter into a memorandum of agreement with another institution, organization, etc. for grant purposes on behalf of the college as a whole. Letters of support to other organizations for the purposes of being used for other grant proposals do not require the consent of the Office of the Vice President but requires the consent of the Executive Director of Grants Development.
- Final Drafts of completed proposals and/or applications must be sent to the Grants Development Office for review 14 days prior to the proposal submission date. During this time, the Executive Director of Grants Development will review the completed proposal and the Director of Grants Compliance will ensure the project complies with internal and external requirements; the Business Services Office (Accounting) will review the grant proposal budget for compliance and accuracy when deemed necessary. The final and complete proposal/grant application must be submitted for review by the President and/or vice president of the area within seven days of proposal submission to the funding agency. After all approvals and signatures are obtained, the Grants Development Office's administrative assistant will duplicate, package and send the proposal to the funding agency.
- The President of Triton College is the only authorized organizational representative of Triton College permitted to sign grant applications.
- The Grants Development Office is the designated authorized institutional representative for all electronic/internet-based proposal maintenance and submission.
- Deans, project directors and principal investigators, etc. are required to forward copies of documents such as award letters, denial letters, major budget changes, reports and other important documents related to Triton College grant proposals to the Grants Development Office.
- Failure to adhere to any of the rules governing the grants management process at Triton College may result in a proposal not being approved for submission or a funded project not being accepted.
Grants Management Process - Post-Award
Once the grant has been awarded, the award notification (i.e. letter, contract, grant subcontract agreement, etc.) should be forwarded to the Grants Development Office if it was not originally notified about the award. The Grants Development Office will forward the award information to Business Services and they will notify the Grant project director of his/her cost center and object codes. It is then the grant project director's responsibility to create a "New Budget FY 20xx" using the budget transfer/expense reimbursement form. Once the grant project director obtains the appropriate signatures on the form, the assigned grant accountant will review, sign and forward to the assistant director of finance to review. After all signatures are approved the assistant director of finance will input the budget into Colleague and the budget will then be available through WebAdvisor.
Once a grant has been awarded, the Grants Development Office will:
- Inform the dean, project director and Business Office of the grant award.
- Send thank you letter to the funding agency.
- Collect authorized signatures on official grant agreement.
- Meet with grant accountant, dean and/or project director to discuss the requirements of the grant including reporting deadlines, project deliverables and budget.
- Complete project abstract/compliance form.
- Schedule regular meetings with grant project directors and grant accountants to ensure compliance, monitor grant implementation and track expenditures.
- Send reminders to project directors regarding grant reporting deadlines.
- Assist project directors with interactions with funding agency as needed.
If a grant proposal/application has been declined, the Grants Development Office will:
- Inform dean and/or project director of the decision.
- Request evaluators' comments/feedback from the funding agency.
- Discuss the potential for revision and re-submission in the future.
- Send a thank you letter to the funding agency.
The Grants Development Office is available to assist with amending any compliance issues if a project encounters any challenges. It is critical that you contact the Grants Development Office immediately if you anticipate a problem or if you are having difficulty meeting the grant requirements. The sooner we are made aware of the issue the faster it can be resolved.
GDO Newsletters and Reports
The Grants Development Office publishes bi-monthly newsletters containing upcoming grant opportunities including announcements of recent grant awards, pre-award and post-award news and project director highlights. Listed below are links to view previous GDO annual reports, newsletters, and other grants publications.
Grants Newsletters - FY2020
Grants Newsletters - FY2019
Grants Newsletters - FY2018
Grants Newsletters - FY2017
Grants Newsletters - FY2016
Sacella M. Smith, M.S.
Executive Director, Grants Development
(708) 456-0300, Ext. 3022
Norma Villasenor, M.A.
Administrative Assistant, Grants Development
(708) 456-0300, Ext. 3615
Raquel Cotuno, M.A.
Director, Grants Compliance
(708) 456-0300, Ext. 3027
Christina Skasa, M.A., M.S.
Director, Grants and Pre-Award Operations
(708) 456-0300, Ext. 3631
Note to Students: The Grants Development Office does not help individual students with financial aid or scholarships.
Please visit the Financial Aid page for Student Grants and Scholarship Opportunities.