Proposal Development: Writing and Winning


This seminar, usually lasting a minimum of three hours, will provide school, community, and organizational leaders with the essential knowledge and introductory skills needed for writing successful proposals to foundations, state agencies, or Federal agencies. The seminar includes a basic approach to reviewing a request for proposal (RFP) and analyzing the right time to seek an opportunity to present an unsolicited proposal to a potential sponsor. Techniques, tools, and tips assembled from two decades of writing winning proposals will be shared.


Funding and other programmatic resources to support local research programs, demonstration projects, or to promote new developmental programs are readily available from many different sources. All that is needed is the knowledge of where to look for these sponsors and how to respond to the opportunity with a professionally written argument and management plan captured in a proposal. Thus, the art and science of writing successful proposals must be uniquely blended into the developmental effort of each proposal. These skills and techniques will be carefully outlined for both the beginning writer and the very experienced grant writer. This seminar will prepare leaders to write a winning proposal and effectively mentor a successful proposal writing team.

Seminar Program

This seminar will provide the basic knowledge and introductory skills needed to develop a plan for writing a proposal and for the full development and submission of a proposal to any sponsor. The objectives for this seminar are:

  1. To provide information on how to identify potential sponsors and how to analyze these opportunities to ensure higher success rates for funding;
  2. To provide a discussion of the basic components of a winning proposal and how to be sure each section contains the required information;
  3. To provide sample materials useful to writers to guide the preparation of all sections of a proposal; and
  4. To demonstrate selected successful writing techniques and analytic tools, and review rejected proposals to gain experiences for the next effort.

The seminar format, depending on time available, will include research methods and information seeking techniques, sample writing opportunities, handouts, group discussion and sharing, critiques of sample proposals, and a question and answer period.

To schedule a seminar, contact John Gailer at the National Dropout Prevention Center Network: 864-656-2675, or via email to

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