MIT Faculty Newsletter  
Vol. XVI No. 4
February / March 2004
The New President
The New President
Improving Our System
of Faculty Governance
Update on Women Faculty in the
School of Engineering
Recommendations for Improving
Faculty Quality of Life
FRADS Supports Faculty Fundraising
Reminiscences: Fifty Years on the Engineering Faculty
A Formal Recommendation
to the MIT Corporation
The Center for International Studies
The Clinical Research Center
The Operations Research Center
Beyond Fuzzy Definitions of Community:
A Report and an Invitation
Cambridge and MIT:
Exchanging Students, Exchanging Ideas
Information Services & Technololgy (IS&T):
The Focus is on Service
Campus Growth (1985 – Present)
Printable Version

FRADS Supports Faculty Fundraising

Janet Wasserstein

Did you know that there is a department at MIT established to support school and faculty fundraising initiatives? The Department of Foundation Relations & Academic Development Support (FRADS), headed by Jack Oldham, manages MIT's relationships with foundations and supports a variety of project-driven fundraising activities. For those projects that have been designated as institutional priorities by the president, the provost, or deans, FRADS can:

  • Work to develop a project from idea to fundable program.
  • Conduct prospect research on foundations that are potential matches for a project.
  • Contribute to identifying relevant program officers at foundations and facilitate contact with them.
  • Provide background information on the history of MIT's relationship with specific foundations and devise strategies for approaching them.
  • Travel to meet foundation representatives.
  • Provide assistance in editing and drafting proposals.
  • Raise awareness of a project's funding needs among other Resource Development staff on campus, e.g., Office of Corporate Relations, Office of Campaign Giving, etc.
  • Connect those who are doing similar or related work on campus and brainstorm about ways to collaborate with others on related projects.
  • Maintain contact with foundations, both during and after the grant-making cycle, and let administrators and faculty know of new developments regarding a proposal.
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In other situations, FRADS can:

  • Give an overview of foundation fundraising and information about recent news and trends in grant-making.
  • Provide guidance on the print, CD, and online resources available in becoming familiar with private foundations.
  • Inform when there are requests for proposals (RFPs) from foundations in a relevant field.
  • Review and provide feedback on proposals to foundations.
  • Assist with the procedures involved in submitting a proposal, including the submission of required supporting institutional documents.
  • Track information about an award, provide reminders when a report is due, and provide advice with acknowledgement letters.
  • Share information about foundations we have researched and/or visited.

In each of these instances, FRADS staff work closely with School Development Officers (SDOs), who have three primary roles: assist the deans of MIT's schools with all of their resource development activities; manage relationships with and cultivate gifts from major donors interested in supporting specific school-based initiatives; and serve as liaisons from each of the schools to all units of central Resource Development, including the Offices of Campaign Giving, Planned Giving, Corporate Relations, and FRADS. SDOs can play an especially helpful role in devising strategies for addressing the funding priorities of schools and individual departments.

FRADS has recently launched a new Website that can answer your questions about FRADS' services, provide fundraising resources and links, and alert you to new grants: For further information contact the associate director who works with your area. Or you may call the FRADS office at 617-253-1433 and Lyssa Santolucito can direct you to the appropriate person.

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