Merlin W. Schultz Professional Development Grant

Deadline for receiving grant requests is Sunday, November 1, 2020

The Merlin W. Schultz Professional Development can award a maximum of $1,000 for individual applicants, and a maximum of $1,500 for groups.  Applicants may be a counseling graduate student, a practicing mental health professional (minimum of Masters Degree), or a counseling or mental health organization in Illinois.  The awards will be presented by the Foundation at a time and place to be determined at a future date. Recipients will be given advance notice in plenty of time to attend. Grant recipients are expected to be in attendance for award presentation.

Particular areas to be focused on include, but are not limited to: 


  • School Counseling

  • Therapeutic Skills

  • Addictions

  • Diversity Issues

  • Career Concerns

  • Children and Adolescents

  • Veterans and Families of Veterans

  • Couples Issues

  • Professional Identity and Promotion (conference registrations and participation)

  • Underserved Populations – example; rural areas

  • Immigrants and Immigration

  • Coping with the effects of traumatic events (i.e., natural disasters, violence, mass shootings, terrorism, human/sex trafficking)


The purpose of this grant is to support the professional development of counselors/mental health professionals. This may involve an individual’s attendance at a professional counseling/mental health conference and/or in a professional counseling/mental health enrichment program, or may support the funding of a specialized workshop to train counselors/mental health professionals in a group setting.  One person or group can submit one application per grant cycle. This activity must be completed by December 31, 2021.

The Foundation requires that the individual or group representative applying for a grant belong to a professional mental health organization, such as the Illinois Counseling Association, in order to ensure grants are awarded to those who are adhering to a professional Code of Ethics.

Recipients are expected to submit a proposal which describes and shares their learning experience for presentation at a 2021/2022 local, state, regional, or national Professional Conference. The recipient is to notify the Foundation of their plans and where they have submitted proposal(s). 


Grant applications from ICA Divisions and Chapters or from any mental health or counseling group or agency, versus an individual applicant, must be signed by at least two officers of the applying organization or an officer and a staff member. 

Please note that due to COVID-19 safety concerns, the mandate requiring attendance at a Foundation sponsored recognition event has been eliminated for the 2020/21 grant cycle.  We respect the needs of our grantees, colleagues, and organizations and remain committed to keeping communities safe by adhering to social distancing and respecting CDC recommendations.

Special consideration will be given to applications regarding the use of innovation and technology in meeting the needs of populations impacted or impaired by COVID-19. This includes social workers, counselors, and mental health professionals utilizing technology in an effort to assist clients and agencies in need.

Proceed to Submit an Application for the Merlin W. Schultz Research Grant


Empowering Professionals. . . Enriching Lives

Contact Us
Schultz Foundation for Advancing Counseling

28 Shorewood Drive | Macomb, IL 61455
309.306.1193 | 



In January 2017 the Secretary of State approved the Illinois Counseling Association Foundation's request to conduct business as the
Schultz Foundation for Advancing Counseling.

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