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National Endowment for the Arts

National Endowment for the Arts

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America.

Funding Opportunities

NEA funding opportunities
The National Endowment for the Arts offers grants for organizations for specific projects and to individuals in the areas of creative writing and translation. Grant opportunities include:

  • Art Works grants in Arts Education support projects for pre-K–12th grade students, the educators and artists who support them, and the schools and communities that serve them. The NEA supports three types of projects:
    • Direct learning grants support arts instruction for students, generally pre-K through 12th grade, that result in increased knowledge and skills in the arts and occur inside or outside the school system.
    • Professional development grants equip classroom teachers, arts specialists, teaching artists, school/district administrators, other educators, and community leaders with the knowledge, skills and confidence to effectively engage students in high quality, curriculum-based arts learning and improve instruction.
    • Collective impact grants increase student access to arts education through collective, systemic approaches. Projects should aim to ensure that all students across entire neighborhoods, schools, school districts, and/or states – in communities of all sizes – participate in the arts over time.
  • Research: Art Works grants support research that investigates the value and/or impact of the arts, either as individual components of the U.S. arts ecology or as they interact with each other and/or with other domains of American life. A listing of working papers, publications, and presentations that so far have resulted from NEA research grants in the area of education are available here.
  • Research Labs investigate the value and impact of the arts in both arts and non-arts sectors via trans-disciplinary teams of researchers grounded in the social and behavioral sciences and based at universities. One of the areas of special interest is the arts, creativity, cognition, and learning.

Selected Programs and Initiatives

  • Poetry Out Loud: A partnership of the NEA, the Poetry Foundation, and the state arts agencies, Poetry Out Loud is a national arts education program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization and performance. Poetry Out Loud offers educational materials and a dynamic recitation competition to high schools across the country.
  • Shakespeare in American Communities: A national theater program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest bringing performances and related educational activities to audiences across the country. The program supports high-quality, professional productions of Shakespeare’s plays and related educational activities for middle and high school students in underserved schools throughout the United States.
  • Musical Theater Songwriting Challenge: A national competition for high school students who have a passion for writing songs that could be part of a musical theater production. Partnering with the National Endowment for the Arts is the American Theatre Wing and collaborators Playbill, Inc.; Disney Theatrical Productions, and Samuel French.