The Parents Council Grant Award Program

Each year, the Parents Council Grant Awards Program provides funding to UNC student organizations and university offices to support new and innovative programs/events that benefit undergraduate students. Parents Council families are asked to make a minimum annual gift of $1,250 to support this initiative. Since its inception in 1985, the Parents Council Grant Awards Program has provided around $2 million in grant funding to enhance the quality of undergraduate student life and learning at Carolina.

2021-2022 Parents Council Grant Award Application & Timeline


  • November 16, 2020: Applications will open and be made available for submissions.
  • Application, Process & Program Info Sessions: Carolina Parents Council Grant Award Program
  • December 14, 2020: The Parents Council will review applications in December and January. They will decide which applicants will move forward for an interview.
  • ~February 10, 2020: Finalists are notified to prepare presentations for the Parents Council Executive Committee at the Grant Awards Interview Day.
  • February 22, 2021: Applicant presentation materials are due to NSFP ( for pre-loading on the day of the interviews.
  • Tentatively February 26, 2021: The Parents Council Executive Committee meets to interview applicants and prepare recommended funding allocations.
  • The Parents Council Spring Meeting (March/April 2021): The Parents Council will review and confirm grant awards at their Spring Meeting. Afterward, award letters and guidance will be sent to applicants notifying them of their final award status.
  • Tentatively July 21, 2021: Funding becomes available for you to use (no expenses will be reimbursed until award winners participate in mandatory grant award meetings at NSFP - to be scheduled).
  • May 1, 2022: Funding must be spent as stipulated in the funding award letter. Final evaluations are due 30 days after the program concludes or on this date (whichever comes first).

Interested in applying?

When the application is available, you will find it as a PDF (instructions) and website link on the right hand side of this page. Should you have any questions about the application and the process, please do not hesitate to contact or call 919-962-8304 to speak with Associate Director, Justin Inscoe. A few things to keep in mind as you think about funding for your project.

  • The Parents Council will allocate no more than $50,000 in grant awards to eligible and successful applicants.
  • For 2019-2020 award recipients, awards ranged from $500 to $6000 (18 recipients), with the average grant award being just over $2350.
  • In the past few years, there have typically 25-40 applications each year.

When thinking of your programming and funding needs, consider what is possible given the information above. This does not mean that awards may not exceed last year's maximum gift amount, but it does mean no one will receive more than the maximum available for funding.

Parameters for 2021-2022 Applicants

  • There is no guarantee that your application will move forward to the interview round. You will receive notification if you did or did not receive an interview by mid-February 2021. Those moving to the interview stage will be scheduled for the Grant Awards Interview Day in late February 2021.
  • You are encouraged to submit a focused and strategic application, especially when there may be multiple programs or initiatives within your organization. You are encouraged to be intentional and strategic with what you choose to apply for. Please speak with your department/unit director or peers in your student organization to become aware of what applications are being considered for submission.
    • Example 1: Instead of the First Year Experience (within Carolina Housing) program submitting three applications for mini grant awards, it would be advantageous to roll those into one applications for First Year Experience Initiatives.
    • Example 2: Individual programs within a unit may submit an application (First-Year Experience and Discover (sopho)More may each submit application). An individual program within a unit should not submit multiple applications (Discover (sopho)More should only submit one focused application).
  • Parents Council Grant Awards are not a flow-through for other non-profit organizations. The goal is to impact student learning and the student experience, not fundraise for other philanthropies.
  • Prioritization is given to new projects to provide seed money. Funding is not prioritized for continuing initiatives unless there is a significant new component or a compelling reason to consider sustaining funding beyond the first year.
  • Please read the Grant Awards Application Instructions carefully as there are other parameters to consider when requesting funding.
  • Funding is typically NOT granted for giveaways, prizes, or food.
  • Funding is NOT allowed to be used as salaries or stipends.

The application closed December 14, 2020.

summaries of grant award recipients for 2021-2022