Applying for a Project Grant


A. Check to see if your organization meets the qualifications. If you can answer ‘yes’ to all five of these questions, you may be eligible to apply for a grant.

i. Is your organization a nonprofit?
ii. Are the humanities a key component to your project?
iii. Have you identified humanities scholars or other experts to support the project?
iv. Will your project engage and benefit Massachusetts participants?
v. Do you have matching funds or volunteer effort to support the project?

B. Read Project Grant Guidelines & Application Manual before beginning the application process.

C. Determine which type of project grant best fits your needs by reading the Guidelines section of the Project Grant Guidelines & Application Manual.


There are three parts to the Mass Humanities (MH) online project grant application process. For specific deadline dates for each of the steps refer to the deadline schedule. Follow the steps described below. We encourage you to watch the 10-minute applicant tutorial video which is a good overview of the online application system before proceeding.  Note:  All applicants will be subscribed to our eNews monthly publication which is the best way to keep informed about our grants, programs, and events.  You can manage all your Mass Humanities news anytime.

Step 1: Submit an online Inquiry form (LOI)

All applicants are required to complete and submit an online Inquiry form (LOI) at least six weeks prior to the application deadline by registering through the online application system. (LOI form preview)

To submit an Inquiry form (LOI), click on the online application link at the bottom of this section. Register by selecting the “Create New Account” button if you don’t already have an account. You are prompted to enter your contact information including a required email address, information about the organization, and its authorizing official. Your email address entered on this form along with the password you set up on the next screen will be your account logon. Please write your logon information down for future reference. Once registered proceed to the “Applicant Page” and select “Project Grant.” An “LOI Page” will open; provide the necessary information on that page and click the “Submit Form” button to complete the LOI. Your work on the LOI can be saved and returned to; it does not need to be completed in one sitting. The LOI, once submitted, will go to an MH staff member.

The information provided in the LOI helps MH staff to determine if the project is eligible for funding for this grant category. The program staff will approve or decline the LOI. If approved, you will receive an email notification and can then access the full application by logging on to the account via the online application system and clicking on “status.” If declined, you will receive an email explaining why the project is ineligible for consideration, and will not be able to access the full application.

Step 2: Create a Draft

Mass Humanities requires a draft before submission of the full proposal, approximately three weeks before the application deadline. Please refer to the deadline schedule for draft due dates. The application question legend is available here which indicates with [DR] which application items are required for the draft. * indicates which fields are required for final application submission (step 3). The draft is, essentially, an application without supporting materials.

To assemble your draft, log on to your account, click “edit application” and complete those portions indicated by [DR]. Work on the application draft can be saved and returned to; it does not need to be completed in one sitting. During the draft stage, do not click on the “submit” button. The submit button is reserved for the time when the final application is complete and ready to be submitted for consideration. Once the draft portion is complete, notify your program officer by phone or email, that the draft is complete. Your program officer will review your online draft application and provide you feedback within one to two weeks.

Step 3: Submit a Full Application

Upon approval of the draft, the program officer will give a final go-ahead. After receiving approval, applicants can complete the final step of the project grant application process. The applicant returns to the online application, makes any changes, and completes the application. Fields marked with * are required. When the application, including all the supporting materials, is complete and ready for submission, press the “submit” button by midnight on the application deadline date. In fairness to all applicants, all deadlines for grant applications are firm.

Go to Online Grant Application


Please contact: Rose Sackey-Milligan (413) 584-8440 x101 or
Abbye Meyer (413) 584-8440 x102


A list of all the fields and requirements in the application can be found here or simply click on “print question legend” when in the online application to generate a pdf file that provides a list of all the fields and their instructions for the application. This may be helpful to organize the information you need for the application while offline.

There are five sections to the application that must be completed. Descriptions of the materials you create to complete these sections are in the Guidelines section of this document.

Some documents need to be created in our templates, while others can be created by you (acceptable formats for upload are: doc, xls, pdf, jpg, gif).

Important notes about upload fields:

  • Acceptable file formats: doc, xls, pdf, jpg, and gif
  • Each field accepts only one document. You can replace a document previously uploaded simply by uploading another file (there is no delete button).
  • Since each upload field only accepts one document you may need to combine multiple documents prior to uploading. If they are all of the same type, such as Word, you can combine them in Word before uploading. If they are mixed formats, you may need to turn them into pdf files and then combine them into one pdf file before uploading. See below.
  • Creating PDF files: If you need one, you can download a recommended free pdf creator here.
  • Combining PDF files: Instructions can be found here if you need to combine multiple pdf files. It requires the free pdf creator, primopdf.  Acrobat Reader no longer has this feature.  The full version of Acrobat does allow you to combine pdf files.
  • If you do not have a document in digital form, you may use the Fax-to-File service available in the Tools menu of the online application. This allows you to fax a document that you need digitized and returned to you in pdf format. You must be logged in to access the Fax-to-File service. It is quick and easy to use.

Guide to the materials you need:

Section of the application Materials you need
1) Project Information fill-in-the-blank fields – no templates
2) Sponsoring Organization fill-in-the-blank fields – no templates
3) Project Personnel, including Humanities Scholar fill-in-the-blank fields – no templates
4) Uploads of supporting documentation as required and requested upload your files (available templates:  budget form templaterelevant web addresses and sample templateEvents Listing Form
5) Signatures upload completed application contract form