Applying for ETA Competitive Grants:
A Web-Based Toolkit for Prospective Applicants

Grant Applications 101: A Plain English Guide to ETA Competitive Grants

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New! Guide to State and Local Workforce Data

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Background & Information

The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employment and Training Administration (ETA) is charged with contributing to the more efficient functioning of the U.S. labor market. ETA meets this goal by providing employment services, labor market information, job training, and income maintenance services. Most of ETA’s funding is distributed to state and local workforce development agencies by statutory or regulatory formula that is not open for competition. However, ETA also awards a significant portion of funding through competitive grants to support a variety of priorities in employment and training programming and services. These opportunities are announced through formal Solicitations for Grant Applications (SGAs), which are published in the Federal Register, on ETA’s Grants and Contracts Web site, and on the Web site.
ETA is committed to ensuring that as many entities as possible – in particular, smaller entities such as community-based and faith-based groups, as well as those entities that have not previously managed Federal grant programs — are aware of competitive grant application opportunities. ETA does not encourage the submission of concept papers, abstracts, or other unsolicited proposals, as all discretionary grant opportunities to date are conducted through a competitive process. Recognizing that smaller community organizations and entities that are “new” to the Federal grant-making process may be unfamiliar with ETA SGAs and with ETA’s process for evaluating grant applications, ETA has developed several tools to help new organizations craft competitive applications. This Web site is a central clearinghouse for these tools, and will be updated with additional tools as they are published.

Tools for Prospective Applicants Include:

1-2-3 circles representing stepsGrant Applications Guide

An interactive, self-paced Web guide on ETA’s grant-making process, designed specifically for small community organizations and first-time applicants for ETA funding. The guide addresses ETA’s grant-making mission; its funding priorities; the Agency’s grant application solicitation and evaluation processes; and “how-to” guidance on crafting responsive and potentially competitive grant applications.

PDF Logo Icon Annotated Sample SGA

An annotated sample SGA, which is based on a competitive grant solicitation that ETA published in the summer of 2009. Annotations throughout the document include comment notes that provide readers with information related to specific sections and general requirements of an ETA SGA; related helpful Web sites; and hyperlinks that take readers to additional outside resources. The annotations highlight areas of SGAs that can be particularly challenging for unfamiliar or inexperienced applicants, and offer information to support applicants in developing more comprehensive and potentially competitive proposals. The annotated tool is available in two formats: an interactive format with bookmarks, annotations, and hyperlinks; as well as a printer-friendly format.

Life saver icon Helpful Resources

A compilation of resources that may help prospective applicants develop competitive grant applications. ETA’s guide, Applying for ETA Grants: A Guide to the Competitive Grant Process, is recommended reading for all new applicants.

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