3M Foundation: Grants for STEM Education

OVERVIEW: The 3M Foundation’s science education related giving focuses on increasing students’ interest and achievement in science, technology, engineering, and math.

IP TAKE: This corporate funder awards a larger number of grants each of year. While most are modest sized, 3M awards some sizable grants as well.

PROFILE: The 3M Foundation is committed to building “stronger and more sustainable communities.” It does so by funding organizations that have a real and meaningful impact on their local areas. In the education space, 3M supports initiatives and programs that increase student interest and engagement in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Given it’s history with ‘forever chemicals’ in drinking water, it may give more to chemistry and environmental research in the future.

The 3M Foundation’s Education program awards STEM-related grants to K-12 schools, universities, and community organizations in the United States and around the world. Its giving primarily seeks to increase student achievement in STEM, promote equity in the field, and support post-secondary programs that attract and retain students as well as help to develop graduate students. Not only do grants fund STEM and science education programs, but they are also support teacher development, scholarship and fellowship programs.

3M awards a large number of grants each year and those grant amounts tend to vary fairly widely. Most grants generally range from $5,000 to $15,000. According to the foundation’s most recent tax filings, the average education grant amount is around $9,000. 3M occasionally awards a handful of larger awards ranging from $50,000 to $100,000 each year.

The 3M Foundation does not accept unsolicited grant applications or requests for funding.