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FY 2019 Community College Initiative Program

Grant to a USA Public or Private Nonprofit to Administer a
Community College Exchange Program for Foreign Students

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U.S. Department of State - Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) - Office of Global Educational Programs

Deadline Date:

01/11/19 Midnight 12:00 AM Washington, DC Time


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Grant to a USA public or private nonprofit organization to design, execute, and oversee a program that provides underserved foreign individuals with an opportunity to study at American community colleges. Required registrations may take up to four weeks to complete.

Program Description/Executive Summary:

The Office of Global Educational Programs of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) of the U.S. Department of State announces an open competition for the Community College Initiative (CCI) Program. ECA is seeking proposal submissions for one cooperative agreement to design, implement, and oversee the CCI Program. The CCI Program provides international participants from underserved and underrepresented communities with an intensive academic-year long program at accredited U.S. community colleges, focused on building technical and professional skills while deepening participants’ understanding of the United States, its people and values.

Program Description:

The purpose of the Act is "to enable the Government of the United States to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries...; to strengthen the ties which unite us with other nations by demonstrating the educational and cultural interests, developments, and achievements of the people of the United States and other nations...and thus to assist in the development of friendly, sympathetic and peaceful relations between the United States and the other countries of the world." The funding authority for the program above is provided through legislation.


The Community College Initiative (CCI) Program promotes American competitiveness and economic prosperity, advances American influence, and contributes to the development of 21st century skills on U.S. community college campuses by increasing job skills, reducing skills gaps, developing soft skills, and strengthening employability.

The CCI Program also promotes American values and youth empowerment in the developing world by expanding educational and professional opportunities for underserved, underrepresented populations. Under the program, international students, especially women, study for an academic year at accredited U.S. community colleges to develop professional and leadership skills, and gain a better understanding of American values, culture, and society. Students enroll in quality technical and professional courses at U.S. community colleges and put classroom theory into practice through hands-on internships. They engage in leadership development activities and community service. They improve their proficiency in English which increases their access to information, education, jobs, and the shared means of communication shaping the 21st century. They develop critical thinking skills essential in understanding and countering misinformation and disinformation. They learn about the United States and share their culture with the Americans they meet. CCI alumni return home better prepared to join or advance in their local workforce and to make a positive difference in their communities.

These experiences and skills enable CCI alumni to share what they have learned with others, to provide positive narratives about the United States and counter anti-American sentiment where it may exist. Alumni voice their perspectives of America in underserved communities where they may be the only person with first-hand experience in the United States. They are poised to launch entrepreneurship endeavors, conduct language or professional training sessions, and organize volunteer projects. CCI participants become CCI alumni who are difference-makers who give back to their communities and countries.

In the United States, these international students provide opportunities for global engagement and learning to U.S. community college classrooms and campuses. Through administering the CCI Program, community colleges increase their institutional capacity to host international students and strengthen their internationalization efforts to educate a globally competent workforce. These interactions encourage U.S. community college students to study abroad and foster global awareness and skills development among those U.S. students who may not have the opportunity to study or travel abroad. By contributing to the development of 21st century skills on U.S. community college campuses, the CCI Program benefits Americans and their communities by promoting American competitiveness and economic prosperity.

The program goals are to:

1) Equip exchange participants with professional and technical skills in fields of study that will help them as workforce leaders to meet important needs in their underserved communities;
2) Expand opportunities for underrepresented, underserved youth, especially women, in the developing world;
3) Build mutual understanding, tolerance, and respect through sharing cultures and values;
4) Foster relationships among underserved youth from different ethnic, religious, and national groups, including U.S. peers;
5) Empower participants from underrepresented and underserved groups to engage in addressing issues of economic and/or social concern in their local communities upon their return home; and
6) Promote internationalization efforts on U.S. community college campuses and better prepare U.S. students for successful futures in a global marketplace.

The objectives of the program for participants are to:

1) Demonstrate increased knowledge and professional skills in their chosen field of study;
2) Demonstrate increased confidence and ability in their personal, professional, and leadership skills and enhance employability;
3) Demonstrate improvement in their level of proficiency in English that will serve as a springboard to opportunity;
4) Demonstrate a better understanding of community engagement as practiced within their multinational campus cohorts and in their host communities in the United States;
5) Demonstrate a better understanding of the values, society, institutions, and culture of the United States; and
6) Demonstrate the mindset of a difference-maker with a commitment to sharing what they have learned with others and making a contribution to their local communities upon return home.

The objectives of the program for community colleges are to:

1) Increase institutional capacity to host international students, especially those from underrepresented countries and communities, thereby improving institutional support systems, student experiences, and ultimately the capacity to recruit international degree-seeking students;

2) Increase institutional capacity to facilitate greater engagement among and between international students and U.S. students, staff, and faculty and build mutual understanding, tolerance, and respect through sharing of cultures and values;

3) Internationalize on-campus opportunities for U.S. students to gain international awareness, global competencies and ultimately to increase the global understanding, job skills, and mobility of U.S. community college students.

The proposal should identify specific accredited U.S. community colleges to host approximately 130 participants for one academic year in groups of approximately 12-16 students. Colleges with limited international experience should host smaller cohorts as they develop capacity.

The Bureau anticipates recruiting approximately 130 program participants from approximately 12 countries, to include Brazil, India, Indonesia, South Africa and other countries (subject to change). Currently, CCI participants come from twelve countries and participants are recruited through the Public Affairs Section of the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate, or through the Fulbright Commission if available in the eligible country. The Bureau reserves the right to make changes in eligible countries; proposals should indicate flexibility and willingness to host international students from any and all identified countries.

U.S. Arrival Orientation and Pre-Academic Year Program

A U.S. arrival orientation and pre-academic year program must be provided for all participants in summer 2019. Programs shall be approximately two to four weeks in duration and applicant organizations must clearly justify the length of time proposed. Proposals must demonstrate plans for approximately 40 hours of programming per week.

Academic Year Programs

The CCI Program has five program pillars with equal importance. The proposal must demonstrate how participants will be guided to participate in all aspects of the program and to understand how the individual components work together to create a stronger overall experience. The five pillars include: 1) academic coursework; 2) internship; 3) service learning; 4) cultural exchange; and 5) leadership development and sharing what participants learn with others upon return home.

The proposal must indicate the applicant’s ability to design and offer comprehensive academic-year programs in the selected fields of study for cohorts of approximately 12- 16 students on each host campus. These programs must combine 1) noteworthy host campus academic programs, 2) partnerships with local institutions related to relevant fields of study and that enrich on-campus learning, and 3) co-curricular, sector-based programming that develops a social, political, economic, and cultural understanding of the local, national, and international contexts of each field. The program shall also expose participants to local leaders, experts, and/or practitioners in the field who represent and share diverse viewpoints. Each host campus shall plan to offer comprehensive academic year programs in two or three fields of study. Collectively, the applicant must illustrate the capacity to host in all eligible fields of study across the consortium.

Participants may apply for, and be placed in, the following fields:

- Agriculture
- Applied Engineering
- Business Management and Administration
- Early Childhood Education
- Information Technology
- Media
- Public Safety
- Tourism and Hospitality Management

ECA reserves the right to add or remove eligible fields of study prior to each recruitment cycle.

Program Expenses:

- Round-trip travel domestic and international travel for participants from home city to the U.S., coach class (via American carrier and following “Fly America” regulations);
- Tuition and community college fees;
- Maintenance allowances (estimate and explain an appropriate stipend level). Maintenance allowances should be sufficient to enable participants to meet the costs of lodging, food, clothing, and incidental purchases throughout the period of the Cooperative Agreement in the locations where the participants will be residing.
- Educational materials including books, scientific calculators, and other professional equipment necessary for study in the participant’s field of interest (estimate and explain an appropriate stipend level);
- Costs for practical education and service learning;
- Arrival orientation materials and expenses;
- Costs for a minimum of one consortium-wide event;
- Return travel allowance no less than USD 100 and not to exceed USD 200.
- Advising and monitoring of students;
- Travel and per diem for senior staff members of cooperating organization to monitor and evaluate programs at host campuses;
- Costs of academic and cultural support and enrichment activities;
- Costs for disability accommodations;
- Costs for alumni activities;
- Evaluation, including qualitative and quantitative assessments;
- Tax withholdings and services, as necessary;
- Costs associated with registering participants in SEVIS.

Administrative costs:

- Staff salaries and benefits (each staff member and his/her position must be listed separately.) Please also note the percentage of his/her total time spent on the program;
- Communication costs (e.g. fax, telephone, postage, communication equipment, etc.);
- Office supplies;
- Printing and duplication costs:
- Administration of tax withholding and reporting as required by Federal, State, and local authorities and in accordance with relevant tax treaties;
- OMB Guidance 2 CFR Part 200 Subpart F Audit Requirements fees;
- Other direct costs; and
- Indirect costs.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 184832

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

It is the Bureau’s intent to award one cooperative agreement.

Estimated Size of Grant:

FY 2019 – base year $5,275,000, pending the availability of funds; FY 2020 – non-competitive continuation year one $5,275,000, pending successful performance and the availability of funds; and FY 2021 – non-competitive continuation year two $5,275,000, pending successful performance and the availability of funds

Term of Contract:

Anticipated Project Completion Date: December 31, 2023. This date reflects the anticipated duration of the award – one base year plus two non-competitive continuation years.

Pending the availability of funding, the Cooperative Agreement for the base year should begin on or about March 1, 2019 and end on or about December 31, 2023.


Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicants: Applications may be submitted by U.S. public and private non-profit organizations meeting the provisions described in Internal Revenue Code section 26 USC 501(c)(3).

Other Eligibility Requirements:

a.) Bureau grant guidelines require that organizations with less than four years of experience in conducting international exchanges be limited to $130,000 in Bureau funding. ECA anticipates making one award, in an amount up to $5,275,000, pending the availability of FY 2019 funds, to support program and administrative costs required to implement this exchange program. Therefore, organizations with less than four years of experience in conducting international exchanges are ineligible to apply under this competition.

b.) Technical Eligibility: All proposals must comply with the requirements stated in the NOFO, POGI, and the Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI); non-compliance will result in your proposal being declared technically ineligible and given no further consideration in the review process.

c.) Eligible applicants may not submit more than one proposal in this competition. If more than one proposal is received from the same applicant, all submissions will be declared technically ineligible and will receive no further consideration in the review process. Please note: Applicant organizations are defined by their legal name, and EIN number as stated on their completed SF-424 and additional supporting documentation outlined in the Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI) document.

At the discretion of the Warranted Grants Officer, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs DOES NOT PAY FOR THE FOLLOWING:

a. Publication of materials for distribution within the United States;
b. Administration of a program that will make a profit;
c. Expenses incurred before or after the specified dates of the grant;
d. Projects designed to advocate policy views or positions of foreign governments or views of a particular political faction;
e. Entertainment costs unless there is a programmatic purpose (See OMB Guidance 2 CFR Part 200.438 Entertainment Costs);
f. Contingency funds to cover unexpected costs, including salary increases, increased airfares, other inflationary factors unless the amounts are estimated using broadly-accepted cost estimating methodologies, specified in the budget documentation of the Federal award. (See OMB Guidance 2 CFR Part 200.433 Contingency Provisions)

Pre-Application Information:

Application Deadline Date: January 11, 2019

Applicants have until midnight (12:00 a.m.), Washington, DC time of the closing date to ensure that their entire application has been uploaded to the site.

Method of Submission: Applications may only be submitted electronically through The registration process can take up to four weeks to complete. Therefore, registration should be done in sufficient time to ensure it does not impact your ability to meet required application submission deadlines.

Unique Entity Identifier Number: You are required to have a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) number to apply for a grant or cooperative agreement from the U.S. Government. This number is a nine-digit identification number, which uniquely identifies business entities. Obtaining a UEI number is easy and there is no charge. To obtain a UEI number, access or call 1-866-705-5711. Please ensure that your UEI (Data Universal Numbering System or DUNS) number is included in the appropriate box of the SF – 424 which is part of the formal application package. For more detailed instructions for obtaining a UEI (DUNS) number, refer to:

Required Registration with the System for Award Management (SAM): All federal award applicants must be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) database in order to submit a proposal in response to an open competition on

For more detailed instructions for registering with SAM, refer to:

Anticipated Award Date: March 1, 2019, pending the availability of funds.

View this opportunity on

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

LaRita Campbell
Phone 202-632-9458

Office of Global Educational Programs
ECA/A/S/U, SA-5, 4th floor, U.S. Department of State,
2200 C Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20037 Customer Support
Contact Center Phone: 800 -518-4726
Business Hours: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; closed on federal holidays

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URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming