Network Exchange Program

About the Network Exchange Programs

Network Exchange Programs allow Network institutions to showcase distinctive, signature projects, institutes, or curricula that highlight the Christian or church-related characteristics of their schools. They provide for an extended visitation by faculty and leaders from other Network colleges, allowing close observation and study of the pertinent program, so that other institutions might learn from the host institution's experience and perspectives.

Any established and distinctive institution, program, or curricular emphasis that especially promotes the college or university's mission and Christian character may be an appropriate focus for a Network Exchange. These may be programmatic initiatives like core programs, honors programs, interdisciplinary programs, or capstone courses. Or they might take the form of research or study institutes, international experiences, co-curricular programs, off-campus study centers, or service learning programs.

A Network Exchange program may be funded for $25,000. Institutions that have already received a grant in this category will not be eligible in the same category again for three years after the original grant was awarded.

The precise character and format of each program is to be determined by the applicant. The normal expectation is that the program should run for three days, allowing participants to observe and experience first-hand the particular aspect of the institution being featured. There should also be well-planned opportunities for visitors to exchange ideas with the host institution and with one another about possible lessons and applications of the program in other settings. Each Program should consist of ten to fifteen participants from other Network schools, with a limit of two participants per institution.

Institutions selected to host a Network Exchange Program will be responsible for organizing and structuring this Program, making all on-campus arrangements, publicizing the Program at National Network institutions, and recruiting participants. At the conclusion of the Exchange the Coordinator must submit a written report.

Each application must include a proposed budget. The budget should cover on-campus expenses, fees for speakers or presenters, a stipend for the program Coordinator, and a 10% overhead cost for the host institution. The budget should also include funds for participant costs for travel, food, and lodging; these costs may be paid directly by the host institution, or allotted in the form of stipends to each participant.

Applications must also include plans for evaluating the program in the short and long term.

Finally, while the focus of the Network Exchange should be on what the participants themselves learn, the best Exchanges will have a broader impact on the LFP, church-related higher education, or the academy in general. Applications should therefore address plans to disseminate more broadly, especially among LFP schools, features of the program highlighted in the Network Exchange.

Applicants must consult with the Lilly Fellows Program Associate Director prior to submitting the application.


Recently Completed Network Exchange Program

Hope College hosted a three-day network exchange workshop on March 6-9, 2022 in Holland, MI at the Haworth Hotel  for 13 faculty members from the Lilly Network. The workshop focused on the intersections of literature, faith, and campus and community engagement by exploring Hope College’s NEA Big Read Lakeshore program, an annual month-long community-wide reading program focused on the reading of a common book, as a springboard to discuss faculty members’ participation in literature-based programs. During the workshop, participants explored faith-based approaches to studying and discussing literature, alignments between institutional missions and program goals, best practices around program implementation and partnerships (churches, librarians, educational institutions, non-profits), and ways to conduct research and scholarship around program involvements. The workshop was open to faculty from the Lilly Network who led, were involved with or interested in starting  literature-based campus and/or community programs and included faculty from 9 states and who represented a variety of academic positions including Dean, professors of all ranks, directors of specific programs, and an Education Librarian attended the workshop.

The workshop was designed to provide the participants with insight and perspective into various aspects of literature-based programming for campuses and/or communities. The schedule included 9 different sessions that involved a variety of panelists (faculty and staff members at Hope College, public librarians, teachers, and community members involved in the Big Read) and speakers.


The deadline is September 15 of each year.

Application to host a Network Exchange Program

Network Exchange Programs previously funded can be seen here.

Noteworthy News

September LFP Update

The Current LFP Update for September 2023 is now available. Click here.


Registration is now open for the 2023 National Conference

Registration is now closed for the 2023 National Conference, "Contemplating Integral Ecology for the Common Good," on October 20-22 at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, MI. Click here for more information about the conference, including the schedule. 


Registration is now open for the 2023 Administrators Workshop

Registration is now closed for the 2023 Workshop for Senior Administrators on the topic, "Fostering Hope in a Polarized Age," October 19-20, at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, MI. Click here for more information about the workshop, including the schedule.


Announcing the winner of the 2022 Arlin G. Meyer Prize

We are pleased to announce Gordon Johnston, Professor of Creative Writing at Mercer University, as the winner of the 2022 Arlin G. Meyer Prize in Imaginative Writing for his book of poetry, Scaring the Bears. For more information and to see the finalist for this prize, click here.


Lilly Network of Church- Related Colleges and Universities

If you are interested in learning more about membership in the Lilly Network of Church-Related Colleges and Universities, please contact us here.


New edition of Leading Lives that Matter released

In their second edition of Leading Lives That Matter, editors Mark Schwehn and Dorothy Bass compile a wide range of texts—from ancient and contemporary literature, social commentary, and philosophy—related to questions of vital interest for those who are trying to decide what to do with their lives and what kind of human beings they hope to become. Leading Lives that Matter has been an important text in many of our fellowship and grant programs, and it contains excellent resources. Click here for more information and an excerpt.