How much will the Foundation invest annually?
Annual allocations will be determined in the fourth quarter prior to the start of each new fiscal year, which begins in January.
Who is eligible to receive a grant from the Foundation?
Eligibility is based on the following requirements:
- Organizations must be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) and be classified as a public charity under section 509(a) of the Internal Revenue Code, or a qualified public entity as described in section 170(c) of the Code.
- Organizations should be able to present their tax-exempt letter at time of request (pending letters will not be accepted).
- Organizations must serve communities in Mississippi. Out-of-state organizations that run initiatives in Mississippi are eligible to apply.
- Organizations should be able to demonstrate a direct impact on at least one of the listed funding priorities on this website.
- Organizations should be prepared to develop and share metrics measuring the effectiveness of their programs.
What organizations or programs are not eligible to receive a grant?
We do not award grants to individuals, capital programs, foreign organizations, or political organizations. Additionally, we do not award grants to the following:
- Organizations providing pass-through funds to an ineligible organization
- Individuals or families, including those requesting scholarships or fellowship assistance
- Small business or private business ventures
- Fundraising events or sponsorships that would provide the Foundation tangible benefits (e.g., tickets or tables at events)
- Athletic or sports-related events, league or team sponsorships, school-affiliated orchestra, band, choir, or student trips/tours
- Political campaigns or labor, fraternal, or civic clubs
- High school drop-out programs or K-8 programs
- Organizations that discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, sex, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, or national origin
- Endowment funds
Is the Woodward Hines Education Foundation a new organization?
The Woodward Hines Education Foundation was formerly known as the Education Services Foundation (ESF). ESF was established in 1995 for the purpose of increasing college access and entry for young people in Mississippi. In 2016, the board changed its name to the Woodward Hines Education Foundation.
The new name honors the vision and legacy of Jack Woodward and J. Herman Hines, both Mississippians instrumental in originally forming the foundation as a catalyst for improving access to postsecondary education for residents across the state.Since its inception, WHEF has worked to increase college access and entry for young people in Mississippi and has expanded that work to support promising practices that lead to college persistence and completion. The Foundation seeks a Mississippi where all people can secure the training and education beyond high school that will allow them to advance their quality of life, strengthen their communities, and contribute to a vibrant and prosperous future for the state of Mississippi.
How does the Foundation define postsecondary education?
Postsecondary education consists of educational opportunities after high school graduation, which result in a degrees, certifications, or credentials that will lead to gainful employment. Examples include two- and four-year degrees, apprenticeships, certifications and other credentialing programs.Our overarching goal is to steer more low-income and other underrepresented students into these postsecondary opportunities, which can transform their lives and create strong communities. The recent Pew Research Center data on the rising cost of not going to college shows that college graduates working full-time earn about $17,500 more annually than employed young adults holding only a high school diploma.
What is the Foundation’s geographic focus?
We will fund qualified organizations that provide programs and services aligned with our funding strategies across the state of Mississippi.
May I speak with someone at the Foundation to discuss funding opportunities?
If an organization is interested in providing information regarding work that aligns with our funding strategies, they may contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. WHEF staff will respond to emails within three business days.
Elevating Mississippi to a Higher Degree