Regan Fund

Established through the generous gifts of Donald T. Regan, 66th Secretary of the Treasury, the Regan Fund supports programs that invite distinguished speakers to Harvard to present views in the fields of economics, government, and social problems of the United States and the world. Eligible programs present views that might not otherwise be available to undergraduates seeking knowledge or just curious about alternate solutions to current and future problems.

The Social Science Division seeks proposals for programs that meet the goals of the Regan Fund by bringing diverse speakers to campus to lecture to undergraduates. Proposed activities may be open to other HUID holders, but the focus must be on undergraduate students. We are particularly interested in supporting programs tied to academic courses, and/or developed in collaboration with the College. We welcome proposals from recognized student organizations, but require commitment of active mentorship by a faculty member or departmental administrator.


Jennifer Shephard (5-7906) in the Social Science Dean's Office with questions.

Freedom of Speech

Regan funding does not imply endorsement of a given speaker's ideas or opinions, expressed here or elsewhere; however, the University and FAS have a strong commitment to freedom of speech.

"Because no other community defines itself so much in terms of knowledge, few others place such a high priority on freedom of speech. As a community, we take certain risks by assigning such a high priority to free speech. We assume that the long term benefits to our community will outweigh the short term unpleasant effects of sometimes noxious views. Because we are a community united by a commitment to rational processes, we do not permit the censorship of noxious ideas. We are committed to maintaining a climate in which reason and speech provide the correct response to a disagreeable idea." (excerpt from FAS Free Speech Guidelines)

Terms & Conditions

The following terms and conditions apply.

  1. Regan funds cannot be used to support events that are co-sponsored by outside (non-Harvard) organizations.
  2. Regan funds cannot be used to support events for which tickets are sold.
  3. Regan funds are not meant to provide long-term support for a recurring program's operating expenses.
  4. Being for the benefit of Harvard undergraduates, Regan-funded events shall be restricted to HUID holders only.
    • Within one month of the conclusion of the funded event, all grantees must submit a one-page report describing successes and challenges associated with the activity, including the level of undergraduate attendance.
    • Funds must be spent within 18 months of the award date. Remaining funds must be returned.
    • Student organizations whose proposed activities are selected for funding:
      • Must review their event plans and promotional materials with the Office of Student Life (OSL) prior to receiving funding (read over the policies and guidelines and email to set up a meeting);
      • Must confirm their security plans in advance of the event if the Regan Review Committee and/or OSL determine security is necesary;
      • In some case may be asked to submit receipts for reimbursement after the conclusion of their event(s); in cases of financial hardship funding will be advanced prior to the event(s) in question.

    Deadlines & Submission

    The Regan Fund Review Committee evaluates proposals three times per academic year. To be considered, proposals must be received no later than 5 pm on the second Monday in September and first Mondays in December and March. Decisions will be announced approximately one month later.

    Proposers should complete an application in Qualtrics.

    Application Instructions

    Proposals must include all of the information specified below.

    Create and submit your application in Qualtrics.
    (Do not use the old Microsoft Word form.)

    Note that you will be asked to attest to having read and understood the FAS Free Speech Guidelines.

    1. CONTACT and overview
      • Proposer contact information including, as applicable, the name of the organization (e.g. research center, department, student group) or course hosting the activity.
      • Planned date(s).
      • Expected venue(s).
    2. A NARRATIVE describing the proposed activity and indicating:
      • How the event(s) will contribute to the academic life of the College, and specifically how the activity will appeal to, and benefit, undergraduates, with emphasis on how the event(s) will provide diverse views that might not otherwise be available to the undergraduate population.
      • The particular expertise of the proposed speaker(s) in economics, government, and/or social problems of the United States and the world.
    3. A PLAN for securing undergraduate attendance.
      If you have a track record running this type of event, feel free to reference it here. Furthermore, undergraduates often have ideas about how to engage their fellow students. Among other strategies, you might consider any or all of the following:
      • Including undergraduates on all event planning committees.
      • Working with relevant student organizations.
      • Involving students as participants (not mere attendees) in the events -- can a panel discussion, for instance, include an undergraduate speaker?
      • Asking interested undergraduates to provide statements or videos that can be used to promote the event(s).
      • Hosting the event(s) in an undergraduate House.
      • If the speaker is spending the night, could you include an additional informal meal event with the speaker and undergraduates?
    4. A brief line-tem BUDGET. Permissible expenditures include:
      • Travel (airfare, ground transportation, lodging, meals)
      • Honoraria (max. $3,000 per speaker)
      • Advertising/publicity
      • Room/ AV rental
      • Translation services
      • Event security (as necessary)
      Expenses must be consistent with Harvard’s travel and reimbursement policies, including class of travel restrictions, and meal/hotel caps. The Review Committee may permit additional categories of expense if strong justification is provided.
      If the funds you are requesting will cover only a portion of the activity's total costs, please provide your total budget amount and list of other funding sources.
    5. LETTER of support. Proposals submitted by student organizations  must include a letter from a faculty member or department administrator committing to active mentorship of, and involvement in, the activity.