Inquiries and Guidelines

Higher Learning


Phillip Brian Harper
Program Director

Armando I. Bengochea
Senior Program Officer, and Director, MMUF

Maria Sachiko Cecire
Program Officer

Dale Rejtmar
Senior Executive Assistant

Jeffrey James Keyes
Executive Assistant

Camilla Somers
Manager of Strategic Initiatives and Planning

Renee Johnson-Thornton
Senior Program Associate, and Associate Director, MMUF

Emma Taati
Senior Program Associate

Daniel Kent
Program Associate for Research

Mary Bates
Program Associate

Susan I. Dady
Program Associate

Beatriz Dal Poz
Program Associate

Elizabeth Foley
Program Associate

Ashley Garner
Program Associate

Kris Choe
Program Assistant

Yoona Hong
Program Assistant

Chris Jo
Program Assistant

Elizabeth LoCascio
Program Assistant


The Foundation encourages institutions to consider their ability to contribute to and sustain programs they seek to launch with Foundation support.  Institutional eligibility is determined by staff on the basis of criteria established over several decades.  For grants in the collaborative/cross-institutional category of the higher-education program, staff pay special attention to inquiries that link the projects of existing grantees to institutions not previously supported by the Foundation.  

Initial approaches to the Higher Learning program, including emails, must come from a senior academic officer.  Visits to the Foundation by corporate and foundation relation officers unaccompanied by senior academic officers will not be considered. 

The Foundation makes grants to institutions and organizations, not to individuals.  All grants result from invitations issued by the Foundation to institutions with which staff have engaged in preliminary exchanges.  Uninvited applications cannot be considered. Inquiries about possibilities of support may be sent via the Foundation's grantee portal at Inquiries should not be sent to more than one Foundation program.

The Foundation does not fund overhead, indirect costs, and capital costs (construction, renovation, equipment).  In addition, the Higher Learning program does not fund projects in the social sciences or STEM fields, endowment management fees, one-off conferences, and undergraduate tuition or scholarships, financial aid, or study abroad opportunities.  Generally, the Foundation expects research universities to cover general operating costs and equipment, including graduate student tuition.