Since 1984, we have awarded grants to more than 1500 individual athletes and teams – including figure skaters Michelle Kwan and Tarah Kayne, diver Mary Ellen Clark, track sprinter Scout Bassett, bobsledder Elana Meyers Taylor, the U.S. Women’s National Water Polo Team and U.S. Deaf Soccer Women’s National Team.
Special thanks to our Travel & Training Fund partner Michelob ULTRA, who helps to fuel the athletic performance of women athletes with its generous support.
Deadlines and Relevant Dates
The 2023 grant application is closed. If you would like to receive a notification when the next grant cycle opens, please e-mail your contact information to Anne Peltier at APeltier@WomensSportsFoundation.org, and include the name of the grant in the subject line.
Who is Eligible to Apply?
- Individual applicants and all members of a team must be female U.S. citizens or legal residents and be eligible to compete for a U.S. national team.
- Applicants must have amateur status.
- Applicants must demonstrate financial need. The WSF approves grants that will have a significant and lasting impact on the applicant. A request needs to demonstrate a visible, apparent and immediate financial need and be consistent with the Travel & Training Fund’s mission.
- Applicants must have a successful competitive record within their sport and/or age group.
- Applicants must demonstrate the ability, based on competitive record and years in training, to reach and compete at an elite level. Those that have competed regionally (outside their state), nationally and/or internationally and/or are ranked by a national governing body.
- In order to qualify for a team application, a team must consist of two or more females.
- An individual or team may be awarded only one grant per calendar year and a maximum of three grants to an individual or team in a lifetime.
Who is Not Eligible to Apply?
- High school, college, university (intercollegiate or club) or community recreation sports teams cannot apply.
- Any athlete who is a member of a team already applying for a team grant may not also apply for an individual grant in the same grant period.
Per the NCAA, for Division I and Division III athletes, receipt of this fund for general training expenses will jeopardize a prospective student-athletes or an enrolled student-athlete’s amateur status and make the individual ineligible to participate in intercollegiate athletics at the Division I or Division III level. However, in Division I and III NCAA Amateurism rules allow an individual to receive expenses provided they do not exceed the individuals’ actual and necessary expenses and are related to competition, or practice in preparation for competition. If an individual accepts actual and necessary expenses it is the responsibility of each institution to ensure that its student-athletes comply with NCAA legislation.
Per the NCAA, for Division II athletes, prior to initial full-time enrollment at any collegiate institution, a prospective student-athlete may use her athletics ability for pay without jeopardizing her amateur status provided the competition occurs during her one-year grace period. The one-year grace period is the year between the prospective student-athlete’s date of high school graduation, as determined by the NCAA Eligibility Center, and the next opportunity to enroll after the one calendar-year period has elapsed. However, if a prospective student-athlete delays full-time collegiate enrollment following the one-year grace period and continues to participate in organized competition involving an amateur or professional team(s), the prospective student-athlete may use a season of intercollegiate competition and could be subject to an academic year in residence. (NCAA Division II Bylaw 188.8.131.52). However, in Division II NCAA Amateurism rules allow an individual to receive expenses provided they do not exceed the individuals’ actual and necessary expenses and are related to competition, or practice in preparation for competition. If an individual accepts actual and necessary expenses it is the responsibility of each institution to ensure that its student-athletes comply with NCAA legislation.
Athletes applying for the grant are responsible for checking the financial aid regulations of the NCAA or sports organization governing their current or future high school, college or university to avoid jeopardizing their eligibility for sports participation. For specific questions about your collegiate eligibility, please contact the NCAA or your collegiate institution directly.
Team Grant and College Eligibility
NCAA Amateurism rules allow an individual, on an outside team, to receive expenses from that team provided they do not exceed those individuals’ actual and necessary expenses and are related to competition, or practice in preparation for competition. For example, “general” training expenses would not qualify for this exception, but actual and necessary expenses for meals, lodging and transportation that are directly related to competition would fit within this exception. If an individual accepts actual and necessary expenses it is the responsibility of each institution to ensure that its student-athletes comply with NCAA legislation.
Please note that if an individual receives preferential treatment, and/or a benefit or service because of the individual’s athletic reputation or skill, or pay-back potential as a professional athlete this may affect the student-athlete’s amateur status.
A Selection Committee will evaluate each application based on the selection criteria below:
- Financial need
- Present and potential level and ranking
- Lack of financial support from traditional sources (ie. endorsements, National Governing Body stipends)
- Role of award in continued participation and advancement in sport
- Potential impact of grant on advancing women in sports
- Contribution to greater visibility of female athletes
- Priority given to those who present a plan for reimbursing the grant in the future, whether financially or otherwise contributing to women’s sports
- Grant Allocation
Grants can be used for coaching, specialized training, equipment, attire and/or travel.
Grant recipients must agree to the following:
- To use the grant for its intended purpose. (e.g. coaching, equipment or travel expenses)
- To participate in the Athlete Ambassador Program that entails one face-to-face visit with a WSF grantee and at least one virtual connection a year. Ambassadors will be matched with the grantees closest to their communities. (*Face-to-face visits are TBD based on COVID-19 restrictions.)
- To include recognition of your grant and of the Women’s Sports Foundation and Michelob ULTRA, for recipients 21 years of age or older, in all publicity surrounding your involvement in sports.
Individual grants will vary between $2,500 and $10,000. Up to $100,000 in grants will be awarded each calendar year.
How to Apply
During the program application period, an authorized representative must visit Foundant GLM, the Women’s Sports Foundation’s grant-management system, and follow the directions to register a new user profile or update an existing profile. Limit one (1) profile per person/email address. Once your profile is registered, you will be able to save and submit your application on the website.
Please read carefully through the full eligibility requirements, college guidelines and program criteria before starting a Foundant account and applying. Applicants will be judged on what information is available or provided at the time of application submission.
Special note: Under the organization information, please enter the contact information for your National Governing Body (NGB). A Tax ID number is not required to register (so you may leave that space blank).
Applicants will be judged on what information is available or provided at the time of application submission.
The 2023 grant application is closed if you would like to receive a notification when the next grant cycle opens, please e-mail your contact information to Anne Peltier at APeltier@WomensSportsFoundation.org, and include the name of the grant in the subject line.
Notification of Application Acceptance
You will receive an e-mail at the e-mail address provided in your profile when your application has been received.
Any application that is late, incomplete or requesting funds for an event or purchase of equipment that will occur before the applicant would receive the grant money will not be accepted.
Other conditions under which an application will not be accepted:
- Applications that are e-mailed or faxed
- Applications for programs that require compulsory religious participation
- Applications requesting funding towards the purchase of land, construction of buildings, event sponsorships and/or providing scholarships to individuals
- Applications requesting retroactive funding
|Amanda Dennis, Goalball||Peachtree City, Ga.|
|Ana Toncheva, Rhythmic Gymnastics||Santa Monica, Calif.|
|Brittany Aveni, Track & Field||Durham, N.C.|
|Catherine (B) Lindsay, Windsurfing||San Fransisco, Calif.|
|Daniela Moroz, Sailing||Lafayette, Calif.|
|Emily Sweeney, Luge||Lake Placid, N.Y.|
|Erin Golston, Wrestling||Lake in the Hills, Ill.|
|Evita Griskenas, Gymnastics||Orland Park, Ill.|
|Gianella Mazza, Karate||Mckinney, Texas|
|Grace Joyce, Rowing||Craftsbury Common, Vt.|
|Greta Myers, Speed Skating||Lino Lakes, Minn.|
|Jessica Woodard, Track & Field||Mesa, AZ|
|Jillian Elwart, Canoeing||Shreveport, La.|
|Josephine Lee, Figure Skating||Irvine, Calif.|
|Julie Letai, Speed Skating||Salt Lake City, Utah|
|Kaillie (Humphries) Armbruster, Bobsled||San Diego, Calif.|
|Kaysha Love, Bobsled||Las Vegas, Nev.|
|Kylie Kuyava-Deberg, Beach Volleyball||Hudson, Iowa|
|Marin Hamill, Skiing - Freestyle||Park City, Utah|
|Meagan Guy, Skateboarding||Palm Bay, Fla.|
|Mindy Cook, Goalball||Gahanna, Ohio|
|Pamela Stuper, Field Hockey||St. Petersburg, Fla.|
|Patricia Mangan, Alpine Skiing||Derby, N.Y.|
|Rachel Dincoff, Track & Field||Morristown, N.J.|
|Rebecca Johnston, Snowboarding||Hood River, Ore.|
|Skyler Fisher, Triathlon||Dallas, Texas|
|Sylvia Hoffman, Bobsled||Colorado Springs, Colo.|
|Vicki Chang, Breakdancing||San Jose, Calif.|