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CCDI Higher Education Q&As

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This post was updated on August 30, 2023 to include additional answers to questions about this opportunity.

The Connecting Communities Digital Initiative (CCDI) announced the next open application period for their Higher Education awards on May 17, 2023.

Applications are due by 2pm Eastern Time on September 7, 2023.

If you have a question about the Higher Education awards, please send an email to [email protected]. Please write your email subject as follows: Notice 030ADV23R0034 – Of the People Widening the Path: Connecting Communities Digital Initiative – 2023.

Below you will find responses to questions we’ve received about this opportunity:

  1. After reading both NOFOs for the Of the People Widening the Path: Connecting Communities Digital Initiative, I would like to ask what the Library of Congress considers to be a legal component of a higher education institution vs an organization that is separate enough from an HEI to apply for the Libraries, Archives or Museums opportunity.

    I work for the limited submissions team in the Office of Research at XXX University. We only have one campus that qualifies as a minority serving institution, but we have multiple interested libraries, archives, and museums on other campuses which are associated with the university but which are also separate entities in their purpose and programming. These include the XXX Music Center and the Archives of Traditional Music, the latter of which includes collections from indigenous populations.

    Are these organizations ineligible for the LAM opportunity, or is there some documentation we could provide to show that their purpose and programming are separate from the university which would allow them to apply?

    To facilitate diversity of proposed projects and expand support across institutions and fields to reach a broader range of audiences, the Library of Congress intentionally distinguishes the notice of funding available to higher education institutions from that available to independent libraries, archives and museums. Accordingly, libraries, archives, or museums that are part of a higher education institution through legal affiliation, financial support, or similar organizational association should apply under the HE announcement.

    While the Library of Congress encourages applications from minority serving institutions, the HE opportunity is open to all not-for-profit, 2-year or 4-year institutions of higher education based in the U.S. and its territories and commonwealths as provided in C.2 of the Notice.

  2. I am very interested in the CCDI minority-serving institution grant and would like to know whether I could be an individual applicant on behalf of our university. If so, the registration on SAM should be the institution or individual?

    Individuals may serve as Key Personnel on an award. However, per Section C.2 of the Notice of Funding Opportunity, the Library will only issue an award to an institution which meets eligibility requirements. As such, the institution should be registered with

  3. I’m writing to clarify the deadline for draft narratives for the CCDI Grant. On the website, it looks like the draft deadline and feedback deadline is the same (June 30, 2pm ET). But I recall from the webinar that the draft deadline was June 20, 2pm ET?

    Per Section B of the Notice of Funding Opportunity, the deadline for optional proposal narrative review is June 30, 2023 at 2:00 PM Eastern Time.

  4. I am interested in applying for this opportunity. I was wondering if there was a restriction on indirect costs. My university has a rate of 45% so a $70,000 award would only be $48,000.

    Per Section D.5.2.1 of the Notice of Funding Opportunity (Budget Items), if using indirect cost rates in the application, they may not exceed 15%.

  5. We are preparing a proposal to build a new LOC website for “Of The People: Widening the Path,” by creating a new web-section for the XX Collection. We are wondering if it is acceptable for us to include adding some additional reference materials from the XX library at the University of XX? These would include rare books, articles, and maps from the XX collection as well as XX student dissertations. We are not sure if you are requesting use of only existing LOC materials or if the students can also curate some of the XX reference materials from XX’s collection and add these into the new LOC website? We greatly appreciate any clarification you can provide regarding the use of other than LOC materials.

    Yes, it is acceptable to include reference materials from your institution on the proposed website. In your application, please indicate which of the Library’s digital collections/materials you will use and provide links.

    You can look at the work of our first awardee, Huston-Tillotson University. Students combined material from the Library and also from their University Archive to create their projects. Here is a blog post about their award:

  6. I read with interest the paragraph about the use of LoC or LC being inappropriate in branding of award projects or products. Is it acceptable to use the phrase LOC in the Higher Education proposal itself? Or should this be spelled out each time within the proposal?

    You should spell out “Library of Congress” when first mentioning it in the proposal narrative, before using the acronym (“LoC” or “LOC”) thereafter.

  7. I am working on the application materials for the CCDI-Higher Education grant, and I noticed that one of the requirements is a single audit reporting statement for institutions that are expending more than $750,000 USD in federal awards. Will our independent audit reports fulfill this requirement?

    Yes, the link you provided to your institution’s reports satisfies this requirement. Please ensure it is included in your application documents per Section D.5.1.1 of the Notice of Funding Opportunity.

  8. What should be the margin size for the proposal narrative? The requirement only mentions 5 pages / double-spaced / 11 point font. A specific margin size would allow me to develop the appropriate length of writing.

    As indicated in Section D.5.1 of the Notice, applicants should use the Proposal Narrative Template to develop their Proposal Narrative. This template has pre-defined margin sizes, which are suitable for the Proposal Narrative submission.

    The Proposal Narrative Template can be found on or on the Higher Education page.

CCDI is part of the Library’s Of the People: Widening the Path program with support from the Mellon Foundation. This four-year program provides financial and technical support to individuals, institutions and organizations to create imaginative projects using the Library’s digital collections and centering one or more of the following groups: Black, Indigenous, Hispanic/Latinx, Asian American and Pacific Islander, and other communities of color from any of the 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and its territories and commonwealths (Puerto Rico, Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, American Samoa, U.S. Virgin Islands). Learn more about CCDI here.

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