Grant Programs and Partnerships

Lumina Foundation’s grantmaking is primarily proactive in nature. In other words, a large majority of our grants are awarded to partners solicited by the Foundation based on unique capacity or position to leverage large-scale systemic change. We have allocated a modest amount of grant monies for unsolicited inquiries to encourage innovative ideas that relate to our strategic portfolios. 


Lumina Foundation makes grants within the United States and its territories, occasionally initiating a grant to an entity outside the United States in order to inform its work to expand access and success in postsecondary education in the United States.

The Foundation only funds organizations that are classified as tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and as public charities under section 509(a)(1), (2) or (3) of the Code or to public organizations that are designated under section 170(c) of the Code, not individuals. Lumina Foundation does not make grants to (a.) supporting organizations controlled by disqualified persons to Lumina or (b.) Type III supporting organizations that are not functionally integrated Type III supporting organizations (as such terms are defined in the Internal Revenue Code).

Unsolicited Inquiries

Limited resources are available for unsolicited inquiries, due to the proactive nature of our grantmaking. We will consider unsolicited inquiries submitted through this form. Due to the high volume of inquiries, we can only respond to the inquiries we may be interested in pursuing. For detailed instructions, please see Preparing and Submitting a Letter of Inquiry.