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Bradley Hilltopics

Fall 2010 • Volume 16, Issue 4  

Web Extras
Incoming freshmen | Tour the arena | Basketball facility | New to BU coaching staff | Shrek makes a splash at Bradley | Accounting society earns gold again | AARON SCHOCK ’02 and Laura Bush reward summer readers | Preston Jackson: Artist in residence | Dig the ride | BU alum wins Edward R. Murrow award | Students talk about grant writing | DANIEL BREWER ’09 aims for Yankee Stadium

 

Student experiences with grant writing

By MELISSA VOGRIN ’10

Students in Professor Lee Newton’s grant-writing course share their experiences. See “How to: Write a grant” in the Notebook section for information about the course.

LISA FITCH ’11
English major
Organization: Center for Prevention of Abuse

While our group never had any direct contact with the organization outside of e-mails and the occasional phone call, I feel that we managed to create some new and exciting experiences for all those involved. As students, this was definitely a learning experience, because we had to apply our classroom skills in a real-world situation. This experience also helped the Center see Bradley students as community-driven individuals.

Writing this grant definitely tested my writing skills. As an English major, I typically write with a completely different style, and it took a while to adapt to a more business-like approach. Also, writing a grant gave me a crash course in the importance of tone. My group and I often were at a crossroads as to what words to choose, because we had to be careful to not sound too needy or too pushy.

The research my group and I had to do for the grant was the hardest part. It was difficult for the Center to get facts and figures we felt would strengthen the grant, but the Internet posed an even bigger challenge. Although we were able to find tons of statistics related to various forms of abuse, it was difficult finding current figures that were relevant to the Center’s cause.

I think grant writing is useful for any student. The whole purpose of a grant is persuasion, and no matter where anyone ends up in the working world, I believe this is a necessary tool. By writing a grant you are asking an organization or company to give you something essentially for free. If you can pull that off, what’s going to hold you back at a future board meeting?

As cliche as it may sound, the best part of the experience was the “feel good” feeling I got by the end of it. Although there were times I wanted to rip my hair out, at the end of the day, I realized how great it was to help out individuals who are in need.

JOSH RICKARD ’10
Actuarial science/business major
Organization: Hooked on Fishing (HOF)

HOF provides fishing services for everyone from the young to the elderly at no cost. This experience was very rewarding. Being able to work on an assignment for class while actually providing a community service is a great concept.

By working with HOF, I improved my business sense. Working with a not-for-profit organization is not quite the same as working with a business. Businesses are competitive and stress deadlines, because time is money to them. But working with HOF, where people offer their assistance through the kindness of their hearts, requires you to be patient and plan accordingly. The staff members at HOF often work separate jobs in addition to their efforts at HOF. I also greatly improved my writing skills by learning to write more confidently and argumentatively.

The most challenging part of this project was actually writing the grant. Writing a grant involves appealing to the person from whom you are requesting money and writing in such a way that justifies your request for money, supplies, or whatever it is you need. It is important to realize that you are asking for money or materials with basically no return to the person you are writing to. It was difficult to write the best grant possible while taking this into consideration.

My favorite part of this project was delivering the grant to the president of HOF. This organization was very pleased to have us represent them. This made writing an assignment for a class so much more rewarding than simply turning in a paper.

I believe that HOF provides a very noble service. Providing free fishing to teach those who may not have been fortunate enough to have ever learned is a great service to this community. Organizations like HOF survive through the generosity of those who are willing to donate their time, effort, and money.

 

Incoming freshmen | Tour the arena | Basketball facility | New to BU coaching staff | Shrek makes a splash at Bradley | Accounting society earns gold again | AARON SCHOCK ’02 and Laura Bush reward summer readers | Preston Jackson: Artist in residence | Dig the ride | BU alum wins Edward R. Murrow award | Students talk about grant writing | DANIEL BREWER ’09 aims for Yankee Stadium