Community Engagement Grants

The Office of Community Engagement awards Community Engagement Grants (CEGs) each year to support students' involvement in community engagement.  Grant-funded experiences develop students as active citizens and to support communities in achieving their own goals. 

Community Engagement Grants are made possible through the generosity of The William & Mary Parents Fund, The Pulley Family Public Service Fellowship Endowment, and The Monteverde-Jackson Endowment.

*Summer 2020 Remote Service Community Engagement Grants*

For Summer 2020, the Office of Community Engagement is going digital with our community engagement grants. In light of COVID-19 and a concern for public health, this summer OCE is only funding community experiences which can be completed remotely. 

What could that look like? In partnership with a community organization anywhere in the world, you might:
  • Create infographics and other visuals to highlight the impact of the organization's work
  • Create, edit, or update an organizations online presence including website and social media
  • Conduct phone or video interviews and oral histories with volunteers, donors, and clients
  • Compile and analyze data
  • Research and draft grant application
  • Facilitate digital public engagement like Zoom public meetings and online surveys
  • Create video trainings 
  • Whatever you can imagine that can be done remotely and benefits your community partner 

Because remote internships have fewer direct expenses, grant funding will generally be given as in recognition of your unpaid service at a rate of $10/hour. More details about the financial elements are included in the application. 

Summer 2020 applications are due by April 21. 

Apply Now


Summer and Winter Grants

Students identify or design their own projects that are usually associated with a social service, not-for-profit or public agency and outline their activities in a proposal that the grant committee reviews. Individual students may request up to $2,000 and student groups may request up to $4,000.

Each CEG award is intended to allow a student to engage in meaningful service work by defraying living expenses and other costs while performing unpaid service.  Expenses that may be supported through the grants include:

  • Expenses for service projects (supplies, transportation, etc.)
  • Program fees for service programs
  • Living expenses

Preference is given to applications that indicate that grant funds will go directly to the community or to students' reasonable living expenses. Funded projects may occur in the United States or abroad, but special consideration is given to domestic proposals. It is rare that travel expenses will be covered by CEGs. 

The grants are intended to support individuals or small groups.  Applicants should note that the committee will take into account other funding sources available to applicants (e.g. research grants, Branch Out financial aid, etc.) in their considerations.

Year-Round Local Grants

The Office of Community Engagement also offers grants during the academic semester ranging from $100-$1,000. These grants can be used for expenses related to student-led local community engagement programming on campus or in the local community. This might include but is not limited to: 

  • Direct sustained service
  • Partnering with a community agency to host a speaker or film screening which educates the community on an important social issue
  • Executing an alumni service program
  • Creating a program or event which connects your academic experience to a community identified need
  • Creating and publishing education or outreach material for a local non-profit

As with Winter and Summer CEGs, the projects must focus on community impact as well as positive impact on the student's development as an active citizen.  

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and reviewed monthly.  Please review the CEG criteria and application page for more details.  

Funding Impact 

Between Fall 2014 and Spring 2018, The Office of Community Engagement distributed more than $135,000 to 200 recipients. 

Each grant recipient submits three reports on their project, including sharing their biggest lesson from the funded-experience. Here are a few reflections from our grantees. 

student reflections
  • My biggest take-away was feeling like I used my time for something good. Instead of spending another week at home, I went out and learned things, met people, and improved my community, even if only in a small way.
  • Teaching, especially under such circumstances, can be extremely difficult but also equally rewarding. What we were doing was attempting to give the tools to these girls in order for them to reach their full potential and it is important that this is continued on.
  • My time in Uganda taught me to better understand that communities are diverse all across the world. Looking at each place and person in their own context allows us to better help one another.
  • Through my experience at the Boys and Girls Club of Newark, I learned that, with compassion as a driving force, we can bring progress and security to our students.
  • I have learned that things don't always work the way you plan or expect them to, especially in development, and you have to be patient and apply yourself to move forward.
  • The best kinds of cross-cultural exchanges happen when you you share something you care about deeply with others who also care about it deeply.
  • My experience with Campus Kitchens was my first leadership volunteer position here at William and Mary. This experience made me feel more comfortable in the community I now call home and better able to contribute to this community.
  • My biggest take away is that sustainable change begins at a grassroots level and must be driven by residents who are invested in the projects they pursue.