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HHMI (Howard Hughes Medical Institute)

Manager: Elizabeth Colello
Priority: Open


Founded by the late Howard Hughes, who was an industrialist, aviation pioneer and film producer. Hughes is considered one of the most influential aviators in history, setting air-speed records and designing planes through his Hughes Aircraft Company, which designed helicopters and planes for military use.


biology/life sciences, higher education, medical research, medical school/education


No support for biomedical research in the U.S., except to scientists employed by the Institute; no grants or fellowships except to individuals or institutions competing under established science education programs.


Expenditures: $1,053,985,963

Total giving: $59,924,253

Giving activities include:

$59,924,253 for grants

$825,610,000 for foundation-administered programs


$1.9M (2014) Rice University

For redesign and/or expand introductory science laboratory courses to immerse undergraduates in research experiences. The courses provide project-based and discovery-based studies or modules where the students’ research results can benefit faculty members’ research.

$1.2M (2014) Yale University

For major reform of introductory STEM courses (also known as gateway/gatekeeper courses). The changes impact instructional practices and pedagogy, and activities include providing active-learning and inquiry-based experiences to students, restructuring the curriculum for STEM degrees, measuring the effectiveness of student learning, and incorporating evidence-based teaching practices and educational research scholarship.