Career Development Grants for Underserved Populations

By Varunee Faii Sangganjanavanich

Social justice and advocacy has been a current professional issue in the field of career development for over a decade. Although various professional organizations have attempted to focus on providing career development services to diverse individuals, some sociocultural groups remain underserved. For the purpose of this paper, an underserved population is defined as a particular sociocultural group that is historically marginalized and faces disadvantages based on their sociocultural identities. In an effort to offer our services to underserved populations, career practitioners and researchers may need supportive resources to expand career development knowledge and practice.


Categorizing the Grants

The purpose of this paper is to present current career development grants for career practitioners and researchers working with underserved populations. Grants presented in this article are categorized into outreach and research grants.


Multiple grant databases were used to identify funding resources. These databases are available for public review. These websites include:







Outreach Grants

A majority of grants presented in this paper are outreach grants. Outreach grants refer to local, state, national funding resources, from federal and private foundations, allocated to practitioners to develop, improve, or enhance services to the client populations. The Grant, the Sponsor and the Purpose are listed in the pdf linked here (starting on Page 4).


Career development outreach grants that are available for  underserved populations include:

  1. Culturally diverse groups (previously named minorities)

  2. Juveniles and disadvantaged youth

  3. Veterans

  4. Individuals with disabilities

  5. Adults in transition


Research Grants

Currently, there are a limited amount of research grants presented in funding databases. The main requirement of these grants is to conduct studies relate to career development, career counseling, career information, career decision making, and career planning. The Grant, the Sponsor and the Purpose are listed in the pdf linked here (see Page 7).


Career practitioners and researchers working with underserved populations should at least be familiar with career development grants. If the opportunity arises to better serve these populations, or if the practitioner actively advocates for these populations, the world can only improve.




Varunee Faii SangganjanavanichVarunee Faii Sangganjanavanich is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Counseling at The University of Akron. She is a participant in the NCDA Leadership Academy V, Class of 2010-2011. She can be reached at vfs@uakron.edu

Printer-Friendly Version

1 Comment

Jai Butler on Thursday 12/01/2011 at 07:58PM wrote:

Hi Varunee,

This is a great article, informative, and thorough. As a Career Strategist, I've been trying so hard to get a career development grant or contract to help underprivileged populations in local area. This helps me to move toward the right direction.

Jai Butler
NCDA Member 2009-present

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the comments shown above are those of the individual comment authors and do not reflect the opinions of this organization.