Application Advice from TDF
Each year, The Dressage Foundation receives hundreds of grant applications. It is always difficult for our Selection Committees to choose the best candidates for each funding opportunity. How can you stand out from the rest?
1. Begin the process early. Finding the time to devote to the application process can be difficult. If you feel rushed, you will skim over important details in the application. Incomplete or incorrect applications are not sent to the Selection Committee for review, so be sure to give yourself enough time to gather all required parts of the application and double check to make sure that everything is included before you submit your application. Allow enough time for your application to reach our office. If the deadline is September 15th, that means that your application MUST reach our office on or before September 15th. There are no exceptions to this rule. The earlier you start the process, the more relaxed you will be, the more your application will follow the format required, provide all necessary information, and allow you time to call with any questions.
2. Read all information before beginning the application process. Remember to do this every year as requirements may change from year to year. If the instructions say to submit your application online, do so. If the instructions say to mail a certain number of copies to our office, then proceed in that way.
3. Setting your goals. How do your goals fit with the grant or scholarship that interests you? Sometimes it is easy to “stretch” the interpretation of a program or fund’s stated purpose to match what you want to do. Be aware that other applicants will take a more literal approach and those that most closely match the stated purpose of the fund will score better with the Selection Committee
4. Consider the funding opportunities. Consider what other assistance is available to you. Does your GMO or dressage club offer scholarships? Do you meet the criteria as stated by TDF? What is the amount of the financial assistance available from the Foundation? Is your application appropriate?
5. Closely review your budget. Do the numbers add up correctly? Have you included all expenses and income? Double-check your math and explain any areas that may be unclear to the Selection Committee.
6. Review your application. Proofread for grammar and typos, as these can make even the best application look as if it was thrown together at the last minute. If possible, have someone else read through your application. Consider how it will look to someone on the Selection Committee. If you were on the Committee, how would you score the application? Take a close look at the requirements. Do you meet or exceed all the requirements? Do you “somewhat” meet the requirements? Are there areas where you do not meet the requirements? If so, you may want to work on those areas and wait a year to apply for the grant or scholarship.
7. Keep a copy for yourself. Before submitting your application, be sure to print or otherwise keep a copy for your records. You will not receive your application back after the selection process.
Now that you’ve made sure that your application will be a contender, how do you make it rise to the top? Our Selection Committee members are busy people. They don’t have time to read a book about each applicant, so keep your application simple and relevant. Answer the questions completely, but keep the information pertinent to the question (don’t go off on a tangent, telling a long story that wanders away from the point of the question). Make sure the information clearly and concisely illustrates WHY you are the best candidate for this grant or scholarship.
Did you know...
• 93% of TDF’s applications are on an easy, online format. Just click “Submit” to apply! •
TDF has a different volunteer Selection Committe for each Fund. These volunteers represent different levels and types of dressage enthusiasts from across the U.S.
• You can find a complete listing of our grants, indexed by category online at www.dressagefoundation.org
FEBRUARY 1 Barnett Continuing Education for Instructors Fund
FEBRUARY 10 Carolyn Van Cise Fund for Michigan Youth and Young Adults
FEBRUARY 15 Karen Skvarla Fund for Young Professionals
MARCH 1 Evie Tumlin Memorial Fund for Region 9 Adult Amateurs
MARCH 1 Lloyd Landkamer Show Management Development Fund
MARCH 15 Shannon Foundation Fund for Judges Licensing
MARCH 25 Trip Harting Fund for Pony Club Members
MARCH 30 Young Rider International Dream Program
MAY 1 Elysium Farm Fund for U.S. Breeder Excellence
JUNE 1 Spanish Riding School Heldenberg Training Center Fund
JUNE 1 Michael Poulin Dressage Fund
JULY 1 Barnett Continuing Education for Instructors Fund
JULY 1 Veronica Holt Dressage Technical Delegate Fund
AUGUST 1 USDF Region 9 Teaching Excellence Award
SEPTEMBER 1 Cynthia Aspden Youth and Young Adult Development Fund
SEPTEMBER 15 Gifted Memorial Fund for Adult Amateurs
SEPTEMBER 30 Major Lindgren Instructor Education Scholarship
OCTOBER 25 $25,000 Anne Barlow Ramsay Grant for U.S.-Bred Horses
NOVEMBER 15 Oregon Dressage Society’s Linda S. Acheson Education Fund
DECEMBER 1 Captain Jack Fritz Grants for Young Rider Graduate Program
DECEMBER 13 $25,000 Carol Lavell Advanced Dressage Prize
Due 90 Days in Advance
Barnett Continuing Education for Instructors
Fund Dancing Horse Fund Sally Swift
Fund for Centered Riding Clinics Violet Hopkins Fund
Apply Through USDF
Edgar Hotz Judges Education Fund
There are no exceptions to TDF’s grant deadlines. Applications must be received by our office on or before the due date. We recommend starting your application early and asking questions along the way. Visit our website to find our “Application Tips” document listed on each Fund’s page that clearly outlines a quality grant application.
Contact TDF right away if you need assistance with your application or the process: Jenny Johnson, Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org Jane Fucinaro, Administrative Director email@example.com 402-434-8585
Printable version: http://alldressageassociation.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/TDF-Grant-Deadlines-and-Application-Tips.pdf