Institution Support

Support the Institution

The Naval Postgraduate School Foundation provides that margin of excellence to the Naval Postgraduate School by providing rapid support of NPS initiatives when government funding is unavailable, unable to support a specific project, or moving too slowly. We focus on institutional priorities that Strengthen NPS Core, Enhance NPS Competitiveness, and Increase NPS Impact.
Institutional Priorities
Community Outreach
Project Athena

Institutional Priorities

Each year, NPS outlines its institutional priorities. These priorities reveal where we concentrate our support to the school for the coming year. While priorities change from year-to-year, the mission of the school and the effects of our support do not: Together, we are enhancing national security, strengthening our military capability, and funding essential programs to hasten innovation in our Department of Defense.

2021-22 Institutional Priorities:

The Sea, Land, Air Military Research (SLAMR) facility
The Human Enhancement Research Group (HERG)
Defense Innovation Support via SEED and "Seedling" Projects
Great Power Competition education and outreach
Naval Innovation Center at the Naval Postgraduate School
Naval Warfare Studies Institute initiatives related to wargaming, emerging technology, Warfare Domains and Disciplines
"Athena" research, discovery and collaboration tool
Strategic Communications promoting NPS Institutional Advancement
NPS Alumni Pride
Expanding Collaboration Opportunities for NPS Faculty and Students

Community Outreach

The Foundation sponsors events such as Discovery Day at NPS, which brings over 2,000 students and teachers from the surrounding community to enable STEM interaction and encourage the pursuit of STEM disciplines. This open-campus event features STEM demonstrations and activities, research lab tours, keynote lectures with inspiring guests (such as alumni astronauts), and innovation design challenges. Discovery Day provides attendees with the opportunity to see firsthand how NPS accomplishes its unique mission of defense-focused graduate education through STEM curricula. Each year, the NPS Foundation sponsors the event to help bring a diverse group of students onto campus and encourage them to pursue STEM disciplines.

The NPS Foundation is also a sponsor of the Rapid Innovation Design Challenge, which debuted during Discovery Day in May 2022. Developed in coordination with NPS faculty, the NPS Foundation supports the design challenges with funding, corporate partnership, and educator outreach. With the goal of expanding STEM opportunities across the Central California Coast region, the Rapid Innovation Design Challenge enables NPS student mentors and faculty to work with high school student teams from the local community to create meaningful solutions with global impact.

In the 2022 fiscal year, the NPS Foundation invested over $110,000 in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM) and community outreach activities to expand STEM opportunities for the NPS Community and K-12 students across the Central California Coast.


Tomorrow’s conflicts will be more integrated, autonomous, and agile than any in our history. Your donation funds all-domain research and classroom facilities that enable NPS to forge a future where NPS’ students, faculty and accomplishments are central to the success of the Naval and Joint Forces. The NPS Foundation funds new facilities and upgrades existing spaces on campus.
In order to best educate and prepare NPS students for 21st century warfare, a modern, state-of-the-art, educational venue is required on the NPS campus. The Naval Innovation Center at the Naval Postgraduate School will enable interdisciplinary, project-based learning that creates warfighting solutions at the speed of relevance. Deliberately designed to prioritize collaboration, hands-on experimentation, advanced analytics, autonomous technologies, increasingly classified work and immersive demonstrations, this facility will be optimized to create solutions with direct relevance to the Fleet, while also sustaining long-term thinking for the future of the Navy and broader DOD. Learn More.
The SLAMR is a multi-domain research facility for private industry, academia and government experimentation and research projects focusing on national defense applications in robotics, autonomous systems, cybersecurity and maritime related 5G telecommunications. The NPS Foundation provided the seed funding for this initiative and continues to fund renovations and upgrades in order to sustain and grow the initiative.

Project Athena

The national security challenges we face require close collaboration across domains, disciplines and services to spur innovation across the Joint Force. To enable the national security innovation ecosystem and address the challenge of disconnectedness across the DOD and academia, the Naval Postgraduate School Foundation is developing a collaborative research tool in partnership with Microsoft and the Naval Postgraduate School.

Athena, which began as a student project and early prototype, is an application built on Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Teams to assure security, enhance scalability and deliver content across all devices. Athena empowers researchers, sponsors and leaders across the Naval Education Enterprise and the Department of Defense to access and query information currently stored in numerous separate databases by use of keywords, topics of interest, service priorities and other filters. 

Athena allows academia, industry and the DOD to work together as a team to solve the hardest and highest priority challenges facing our nation.

During the 2022 fiscal year, the Naval Postgraduate School Foundation invested over $550,000 and thousands of volunteer hours on the design, development and hosting of Athena. In June 2022, Athena 1.0 was gifted to and accepted by the Naval Postgraduate School with the goal of rolling out to the student body in early 2023. Athena 2.0 is currently in beta testing on the NPS Foundation tenant, using NPS community input to improve the product, add new features and introduce other organizations.

Discover Athena:

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