Syracuse University

Foundation Relations Services

How We Can Help You

At Foundation Relations, our mission is to raise funds and bring resources from corporate and private foundations to support University-priority academic, research, capital, and service projects, and to build comprehensive, mutually beneficial, sustainable relationships with select foundations.

What We Do

The experienced staff at Foundation Relations:
  • Works with the Chancellor, provost, and deans to learn about and advance priority projects.
  • Builds close working relationships with key foundation representatives.
  • Facilitates linkages between the University and potential foundation sponsors through research, personal contacts, and proposal development.
  • Provides foundations with information about current strategies and projects that may fit with their particular organizational objectives.
  • Supports active stewardship for funded projects to ensure ongoing good relations between project personnel and the sponsor.

Services We Provide

Please note that you MUST contact Foundation Relations when any foundation will be approached. This will enable us to provide essential oversight and services, including:
  • Assessing a project's suitability for foundations and alignment with SU's institutional priorities.
  • Helping to target your proposals to the best possible matches among foundation prospects.
  • Sharing info about foundations we have relationships with.
  • Facilitating cross-institutional and interdisciplinary proposals by bringing together participants from different schools, colleges, and University offices.
  • Distributing foundation RFPs to relevant schools and faculty.
  • Assisting with strategy, aligning with foundation interests and SU institutional priorities.
  • Facilitating approaches to foundations, including those we do not have relationships with.
  • For SU institutional priority projects, helping to develop letters of inquiry and proposals.
  • Assisting with stewardship and follow-up, including recognition and acknowledgement of foundation awards.
  • Tracking foundation history and gifts.
  • Coordinating with other University offices, including the Chancellor's office, academic deans, college-based development officers, and the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP).

How Can You Help Us?

Strengthening SU's relationships with foundations benefits everyone, as it increases our prospect base and raises the likelihood that individual proposals will be funded.

You can help us by identifying possible foundation contacts among your peers and contacts, and by notifying us of any opportunities to cultivate foundation relationships. Please also keep us "in the loop" about big ideas at your school/college—we might know of a funder they will resonate with.

To help us better assist you and identify your priorities please fill out the Office of Foundation Relations Information Form found here and submit it via e-mail to Niki Phillips (nmphilli@syr.edu).

OSP or Foundation Relations?

Foundation Relations and the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) work closely together. Any time you wish to approach a foundation, you should contact Foundation Relations first, so we can determine how best to proceed.

As a rule of thumb, we will ask you to contact OSP as well if your proposal includes a line-item budget. OSP's budget review can save you time and prevent errors that can impact your award.