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Grants to South Carolina Nonprofit Trade Associations for Educational Training Programs in Qualifying Industries

Career Cluster Partnership Program


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE)
Office of Career and Technical Education and Student Transition Services (OCTE
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Geographic Focus
USA: South Carolina

Important Dates
LOI Date: 07/14/23
Deadline: 07/31/23 4:00 PM EDT Save

Grant Description
Grants to South Carolina nonprofit trade associations and educational foundations to provide educational training programs in a range of fields. Funding is intended to support industry-specific technical and career education programs that will increase the number of skilled workers in the following sectors: construction, automotive, healthcare, engineering, hospitality and tourism, and mechanical contracting. Funds may be used for activities such as student assessment and testing programs, professional development for teachers, student recruitment, and programs for guidance and career counselors.

The purpose of the Career Clusters Partnership Program is to support instructor/student training and student testing in industry clusters to increase the state’s skilled workforce.  

A priority for the 2023–24 program is student assessment.

The Career Cluster Partnership Program funds must be used to support the following activities and programs:

  • Administration of end-of-course testing programs and/or national certifications exams
  • Student recruitment into the industry career cluster
  • Programs to educate middle and high school career or guidance counselors about the industry
  • Professional development and training for teachers
  • Services to economically disadvantaged youth (as defined by eligibility for free or reduced-price lunch)
  • Administration of business/employer awareness and partnerships that lead to experience-based, career-oriented experiences including internships, apprenticeships, mentoring, cooperative education, and service-learning
  • One-year post-secondary scholarships in industry-specific degree programs, if applicable
  • An organization’s statewide student competitions that lead to national competitions
  • Career awareness programs for the industry career cluster


Additional Eligibility Criteria
Eligible applicants are private-sector statewide trade associations or educational foundations that fall under IRS code 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(6) that provide nationally certified programs in career and technical education representing the automotive, construction, engineering, healthcare, mechanical contracting/construction, and hospitality and tourism career clusters. Applicants may partner with trade organizations, corporations, or others to develop strong programs that provide direct support to students to further industry-specific career and technical education programs.

- Career Cluster Partnership grant funds must supplement, not supplant, existing services and may not supplant federal, state, local, or non-federal funds. Programs may not use grant funds to pay, in whole or in part, for existing levels of services funded from other sources.
- The Career Cluster Partnership grant does not provide indirect costs or funds for administrative charges. Grant funds may not be used for office furniture or construction; travel or room and board for participants; college or university application fees; medical, recreation, parking, or other fees; entertainment or alcohol; and purchases that do not directly support the approved work plan.

Pre-Proposal Conference
The SCDE’s OCTE & STS will offer a pre-application technical assistance webinar via Adobe Connect on July 11, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. to assist eligible applicants in understanding this RFP and how to apply for this grant. No password is required to join the session.

While participation is not mandatory in order to submit an application, it is highly recommended.


Pre-Application Information
- July 11, 2023: Pre-application technical assistance session
- July 14, 2023: Deadline for email of intent to apply
- July 31, 2023: Deadline for receipt of applications, 4:00 PM EDT
- September 2023: Notification of awards
- September 16, 2023: Funding period begins; programs can begin

Applicants should email an intent to apply to Tiffany Dorsey. ). A notice of intent is not required but will help the SCDE prepare for the application submission and review process.

Applicants must maintain an active Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) and publicly accessible registration in the federal System for Award Management (SAM).

SCDE Grant Opportunities and Application Tutorials:

Additional Funding Information

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant
The SCDE will award at least one grant of a minimum of $150,000.

Term of Contract
The grant funding period will be September 16, 2023, to June 30, 2024. For large programs with a statewide scope, funds may be carried over for up to three years.

Contact Information
Apply online:

For questions, contact:
Tiffany Dorsey, (803) 734-1650;

South Carolina Department of Education
Division of College and Career Readiness
Office of Career and Technical Education & Student Transition Services
1429 Senate Street
Columbia, SC 29201-3730

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