For this blog post, we had the chance to sit down with our industry partner, Jeff Chen, Head of Research Partnerships at HP Education, to talk about the grant program that HP Inc. has rolled out as a way to answer key technology funding and assistance needs within the higher education space.
Question: You note that HP is more than a “computer company.” As you think about your engagements within the higher education sphere, what do you want higher education practitioners to know about what HP can do for them beyond the hardware and printer narrative?
Jeff, HP: 80 years ago, Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard met at Stanford University and the outcome of their academic research project was HP’s first product.
As HP was founded from within education, our role there has been rooted in our corporate-citizen DNA. Doing good for society was something our founders cared deeply about, and something that matters deeply to us still. It is part of what’s called the “HP Way.”
In particular for education, our mission is to enable better learning outcomes for 100 million people by 2025. As of today, we’ve reached 28M people, which we think is pretty incredible. We see more opportunities to engage, help, and seek input, which is why we’re here with the OLC community.
Question: Why is it important to HP to engage in higher education? What is HP doing differently post-pandemic to support faculty.
Jeff, HP: The pandemic hit institutions hard and fast. Our company founders would often remind us to “do the right thing at the worst time.” The demands placed on faculty to move instruction online were enormous. Whether the classroom is physical or virtual, technology is part of the teaching and learning experience, but funding for classroom technology is constrained.
To address this constraint, HP partnered with the Grants Office, LLC to bring the expertise of grants consultants who have over 80 years – combined experience – in educational grant-making. Together, we spun up in a matter of weeks the HP Grant Support Program, which is a free, no-obligation program.
Question: This is interesting, tell me more about the Grants Office. And tell me more about the HP Grant Support Program?
Jeff, HP: For this answer, we talked to Michael Paddock, CEO of Grants Office, LLC, who said:
The Grants Office is an international grants consulting firm with about 20 years of experience in helping public sector agencies find and secure funding for their technology projects. The HP Grant Support Program provides non-profit agencies, such as institutes of higher education, with grants information, customized funder research, and consultation to help get their technology-rich projects funded and expand initiatives they already have in the works. To engage with this program, all it takes is filling out a simple form! To learn more about the HP Grant Support Program, go to https://grantsoffice.com/hp.
Question: Do you have an example of how the program works?
Jeff, HP: For this answer, we talked to Liz Shay, Senior Grant Consultant, Higher Education, who said:
We’ve worked with many amazing organizations at this point! For example, Kilgore College came to us because they were interested in better supporting their students. After talking with them a bit, we ended up helping them through the application process for the Institutional Resilience and Expanded Post-secondary Opportunity program. This was a competitive opportunity funded through the CARES Act. They submitted a grant for almost $1.5 million to help their community college students, as well as local high school students taking dual enrollment courses. Since then, we’ve been in touch as they work on other grants for other priorities as well so we can help them with other projects they have in the coming months.
Question: Can you share with our members three best practices when it comes to grant seeking?
Jeff, HP: For this answer, we talked to Liz Shay again, Senior Grant Consultant, Higher Education, who offered these tips:
- Select grant programs to apply for based on the alignment of your project with the funder’s goals/mission
- Follow the application instructions!
- Connect everything back to the shared values of the grant in question (e.g., how does the technology you’re asking for enable the outcomes the funder cares about, like student learning outcomes or workforce development)