Thanks to the support of Lilly Endowment Inc., the Educating Character Initiative (ECI) has awarded 41 grants of up to $50,000 to institutions seeking to educate and embed character in their distinctive contexts of higher education. We look forward to the ways in which the work of these institutions will deepen collective understanding of character and expand capacity to educate character in undergraduate colleges and universities. Congratulations to these deserving recipients.


Arkansas State University
Building Character Initiative: A Focus on A-State Students
Beverly Boals Gilbert, Annette R. Hux

Auburn University at Montgomery
Purpose and Character for Holistic Student Success
Aaron D. Cobb, Stephen P. Bray

Austin Community College
Completing the CIRCLE: Shaping Character Through Liberal Education 
at Austin Community College District
Ted Hadzi-Antich Jr., Arun John, Grant H. Potts

Baylor University
In collaboration with Yale University, Howard University, Lincoln University,
Davidson College, and University of Pennsylvania 
Common Good Character Trust
Emily A. Hunt-Hinojosa, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove

Baylor University
Preparing Champions
Paul E. Putz, Juliana Smith, Cori Bolts

Bellarmine University
Character Education in Connection to Thomas Merton
Jon Blandford

Carleton College
Knowing Ourselves:
Reflecting on Values, Ethics, and Meaning-Making in the First-Year Seminar
William L. North, George Cusack, Jennifer R. Wolff

Carson-Newman University
Developing Character Toward Student Success and Flourishing
Jeana Partin, Rodney E. Russell

The City University of New York
The Beloved Community Character and Leadership Institute
Glenn McMillan

Clarke University
Clarke Character and Charism Project
Mariann Weber, Amanda Matson, Callie Clark, Garland Shirley

Davidson College
Cultivating Humane Instincts and Building Public Good
Douglas A. Hicks

Elms College
Ethical Leadership & Mission Sustainability (ELMS)
Andrew F. Coston

Fairleigh Dickinson University
Nurturing Global Citizens of Character
Robert E. McGrath, Benjamin Freer

Fort Lewis College
Character Building Conversations on Reconciliation & Restorative Justice
Paul A. DeBell, Heather J. Shotton

Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System
Planning for Moral Resilience in Nursing Students
David L. Whidden III, Cindra K. Schneider

Hildegard College
Formation for the Common Good
Matthew J. Smith, Jeffrey L. Tanner

Lee University
Character through Core Values
Thomas R. Pope, Jared Wielfaert, Debra Gladden, Holly Perleoni

Miami University
The Character of Entrepreneurship: Preparing Tomorrow’s Entrepreneurial Leaders
Rebecca Crews, Kerri Cissna, Gregory R. Dern

Middle Georgia State University
Leadership and Character Development Program
Rafael Villamil, Winfield Tufts

National Louis University
Building Interpersonal Strength and Character to Improve
College Persistence and Graduation
Jamal Scott

North Park University
Utilizing The Sankofa Experience to Educate Character Development
in Empathy and JusticeAnthony Zamblé, Elizabeth Odette Pierre,
Karl Clifton-Soderstrom, K. Richard Kohng, Peter St. Jean

Providence College
Virtuous Education: Integrating the Humanistic Tradition with Character Formation
Raymond Hain, Iain Bernhoft, Sister Matthew Marie Cummings, James F. Keating

Radford University
Cultivating Virtues for Solving Wicked Problems
Heather E. Keith, Steven Fesmire, Guy Axtell, Paige Tan

Rhodes College
Creating a Community of Character at Rhodes College
Catherine E. Welsh, Daniel Cullen, Brittney Jackson,
Rebecca Finlayson, Mary Elizabeth Miller, Timothy Huebner

Saint Mary’s College of California
Character for Community Engagement
Shawny Anderson, Sarah Beth Dempsey, Jennifer Herzog

Salem Academy & College
Touchstones for Character: Gender, Care, and Justice
B. Diane Lipsett, Jennifer S. Borrero, JaNae Joyner

Santa Clara University
Capacity-Building for Character Formation within a Principled Leadership Program
Sarah P. Cabral, William J. Mains

Seton Hill University
Seeking Conviction and Understanding Vocation:
Coordinating Character Education at Seton Hill University

Sarah E. Marsh

Tufts University
Developing Rigorous Measures for Assessing Civic Character:
A Mixed Methods Approach to Scale Construction
Sunah Hyun, Diane M. Ryan, Peter Levine

University of California Santa Barbara
The Development of an Open-Source App for Enhancing Curiosity
and Its Associated Virtues
Jonathan W. Schooler, Madeleine E. Gross

University of Chicago
Developing and Assessing a Fellowship Program in Virtue and Practical Wisdom
Howard C. Nusbaum, Jim Palos, Zachary Loveless

University of Delaware
Institutional Consensus of Character Education at the University of Delaware
Johann F. Ducharme

University of Dubuque
Educating Character in Athletics at University of Dubuque and Beyond
Anne Funke, Mary K. Bryant

University of Florida
Project VITE: Virtue in Teacher Education
Mark B. Pacheco, Christopher J. Anthony, Timothy M. Vetere

University of Kansas
IRISE Values Adoption Initiative
Nancy E. Snow, Linda L. Luckey

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
From Theory to Practice: Building Communities for Ethical Deliberation
at the Nation’s Oldest Public University
Michael Vazquez, Sarah Stroud, Michael M. Prinzing

University of Texas San Antonio
Developing and Designing Character Education at UTSA: A Capacity Building Project
Rachael Miller, Alvin Curette Jr.

University of Virginia
Building Faculty Capacity to Cultivate Character in the School of Education
and Human Development at the University of Virginia
Sara Rimm-Kaufman, Jamie Jirout, Rachel Wahl, Jim Soland

Utah State University
Developing the Temperament and Tools to Build Peace in the 21st Century
Patrick Q. Mason, Austin J. Knuppe, Shannon Peterson, Tammy M. Proctor

Villanova University
Augustinian Leadership & Character Education Beyond 1st-Year Experience:
Shared Understanding & Collaboration
Anna B. Moreland, Michael Tomko, Colleen E. Mitchell,
Paul A. Camacho, Terence Sweeney

Warren Wilson College
Character at Work: 
Educating for Civic Engagement, Empathy, and Integrity at a Work College
Jay W. Roberts, Annie Jonas, Paul J. Bobbitt

The ECI is grateful to all those who submitted proposals for 2024 Capacity-Building Grants. We were impressed by the quality of the proposals received, including many we were unable to fund in this round. We encourage all applicants whose requests were not fulfilled to reapply in our next grant cycle.