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Holly Maxson Conservation Grant

The Foundation for Advancement in Conservation (FAIC) offers awards for the implementation of Holly Maxson Conservation Grants. The grants are designed to build awareness among students (middle school through undergraduate) about conservation and related fields and to encourage students to consider the field of conservation as a career path. A broad range of projects might be proposed, such as curriculum development, online resources, pilot projects within an institution, or video production.

Two or more awards will be given every two years. A total of $32,000 will be awarded, with a maximum award amount of $16,000, in 2024.

Submission Deadline: February 15, 2024

An information session was held to discuss grant guidelines, eligibility, and prospective projects, and answer questions about project scope. The session took place on Wednesday, November 17th, 2021, and a recording can be found here.

Criteria for Review

  • Reaching and building awareness among students (from any level in the range between middle school and undergraduate) about aspects of the field of conservation and related fields such as architecture, book arts, libraries and archives, cabinetmaking, and the historic trades as a career path
  • Encouraging the target audience to consider conservation or related fields as a career path
  • Promoting and expanding diversity, equity, and inclusion (e.g., building awareness and understanding about the cultural heritage of historically marginalized and underrepresented groups in the United States)
  • Becoming a permanent part of ongoing educational programs, which includes potential for programs to be financially sustainable
  • Achieving project results (as seen in workplan, budget, personnel involved, capacity to manage funds)

In addition, as part of the proposal, applicants are required to outline a plan for the broad dissemination of results to the conservation and museum/library community (e.g. via websites, social media, etc.) and an evaluation plan to assess the initiative, including its impact and usefulness as a model for similar initiatives. These plans will be evaluated as part of the proposal review process.


  • Applicants, whether individual or organizational, must include at least one member of the American Institute for Conservation (AIC). Joint AIC member/non-member proposals are welcome.
  • Individual applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents (Please note that awards are taxable income for individuals.)
  • Organizational applicants must be legally established in the U.S. (states, territories, DC) and possess a Federal employer ID number.

AIC committees, specialty groups, networks, and other groups within AIC cannot apply for or receive grant or scholarship funds from FAIC. Such groups may serve as partners for applicants or in an advisory capacity for an eligible applicant. A member of an AIC volunteer group may apply as an individual or in partnership with other individuals or organizations but cannot receive compensation in their capacity as a member of an AIC group.

Application Process

 Applications are submitted through our online application portal. When you enter the portal, you will be prompted to login to the system using a login ID and password. If you already have an account (this should be the case if you are an AIC member or have participated in an AIC or FAIC program), use the same login information you use to access that account. If you do not have an account in the system, you can quickly set one up before you begin your application.

The online form will take you through the three sections of the application:

  1. Project team (project coordinator information, partnering organization(s) information and letter of commitment (if applicable), project description)
  2. Project information (project overview, goals, dissemination plan, supplementary materials)
  3. Budget information (project costs and FAIC funding request)

You can save and return to your application later to complete it. When you are satisfied with your responses, “save and finalize” to submit your application. Once you have submitted the application, you cannot return to edit the form.

A committee reviews applications and makes recommendations to the FAIC board for final approval. Reviewers will follow the Reviewer Guidelines and an established evaluation rubric based on the criteria for review to evaluate all applications. We notify awardees six to eight weeks after the deadline. Projects should start within six months of notification of funding.



Grant period and release of funds: Grants will generally be made for a 24-month period, but applicants can request an extension for up to 24 additional months (for a maximum grant period of 48 months) if warranted (e.g. developing and field-testing an outreach curriculum in Phase 1 and deploying it in Phase 2 while seeking funds from other non-profit organizations to implement the outreach). Funds will generally be released in two equal payments: half upon acceptance of the award and half 12 months later (following submission of an annual report), unless the project work plan and budget require a different schedule. Grant funding is taxable. One individual or organization will receive the entirety of the grant amount, but may compensate partners using grant funding.

If you have any questions about tax liability, either for yourself or the organization applying for funding, please contact the IRS or your tax consultant.

Eligible expenditures: No cost-share is required but support from volunteers, host institutions, or outside funding is encouraged and can be indicated in the proposal budget. Grant funds cannot be used as a scholarship for individual study, tuition, or to replace funding for existing programming. Indirect or overhead costs are not eligible but can be shown as cost-share. Funds cannot be used to support equipment costs, absent unusual circumstances.

Annual reports
: Annual reports are required and will include a summary of activities, outcomes, and expenditures, as well as photographs.


Final Report

The Project Coordinator must submit a final report within 60 days of the end of the grant period directly to The final report should include:

  • Final Report written by the Project Coordinator including information on achieving project goals and dissemination of project information
  • A summary of expenses and sources of revenue for the project
  • Copies of publicity materials, such as news articles and photographs, if applicable
  • FAIC reserves the right to use any products created through project funding, as well as images and text submitted in annual or final reports.