Thursday, April 27, 2017

Today is the day

Today was our last day of class... for Tuesday/Thursday classes at least.

We began class with four organizations that we are still narrowing down. We have officially decided that we would like to fund one organization and provide them with full funding; but, we have three other organizations that we discussed in class today.

The community committee made calls to the organizations that are left to ask a few questions that our class created to learn a bit more about the organization before we made any final decisions today.

Class concluded today with a vote and we decided to give two $5,000 grants to two organizations and we will let readers know about the organizations soon!

We are so excited to have made our decisions. In the words of our Professor Lynn Blanchard: "Congratulations! You made a decision!"

Feature Student: Sean Kurz

Hi! My name is Sean Kurz and I am a sophomore from Raleigh, North Carolina. I am a double major in Journalism and Global Studies with a minor in Hispanic Studies!

Over the past two years here at UNC, I have many opportunities to be involved with really incredible organizations on our campus. In my first year, I was involved in First-Year Focus Council, which is a Student Government committee that focuses on welcoming first-year students to UNC and planning programs to help them become better acquainted with our campus. I am continuing my involvement on Student Government into next year as an executive assistant for the Student Body President. I have also tried to stay involved with social justice activities on our campus. I currently serve as the Co-Chair for Tar Heel TABLE, which is a Campus Y organization that partners with TABLE in Carrboro to help raise awareness for childhood hunger in the area around our campus. We volunteer at TABLE and have programs on campus to promote the organization. I am really excited to be working with the organization over the next few years! I am also really excited to be an orientation leader for new student orientation this summer!

I applied to this class because I saw the application in the Facebook group for Buckley Public Service Scholars, which is a program that I, along with many of my classmates, am involved in. I was really interested in learning more about philanthropy and it is incredible to have the opportunity to have an experiential education opportunity such as this. In class, I am on the Student Ambassador Committee and I have been the student running this blog! Being on this committee, I have the opportunity to share the story of our process with readers of our blog. The coolest part of my job is that I get to publish the biographies of my classmates; I have been able to read about many of the things they are involved with on campus and learn more about them, and I am proud to be in a class with such passionate students.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Nearing the Final Stretch

As of today, we have narrowed down 20+ grant applications down to 8.

The process has been challenging for all of us in the class because so many of these organizations that are applying are doing wonderful work in their communities. However, our class has the goal to fund organizations that best match with our mission so we have to keep our minds set on our goal.

In class, we are going through the 8 grants we have left, summarizing each of the applications for the class, and providing recommendations for whether or not we should fund these programs. Hopefully with these recommendations, we will be able to continue to narrow down our list.

Every week as I am writing for this blog, I always write about how impressive the thoughtfulness of students in our class is, and the intelligence of my classmates, but it is so true. The discussions are so incredible and each student has thought so carefully about each one of these grants. I am personally very proud to be a member of this class and be among such passionate students.

Just had to take a moment to say that....

But in the meanwhile, we are another step closer to selecting our organizations to fund.

Feature Student: Myra Waheed

Name: Myra
Hometown: Goldsboro, NC
Major: Political Science, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies minor

Why'd I take HBEH 611?

I applied to take this class because I was interested in learning about the contemporary scale and strengths in the philanthropy sector in the United States. I wanted the opportunity to study sustainable service and learn about the returns and frameworks that foundations have used to grow their mission model. On top of the interesting curriculum and set-up, I found this course to be valuable in its tangible grant-making experience. It provided useful management insight about what it is like to support and evaluate grant requests made from nearby organizations.

What committee?
I joined our benefactor's student liasion ambassador program for the Learning By Giving Foundation. It has been personally rewarding to share and note the experiences of the participants in this course and for the Learning By Giving Foundation to see the utility of this course in our undergraduate program at UNC Chapel Hill.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Feature Student: Sanah Ahmed

Hi! My name is Sanah Ahmed and I am a sophomore majoring in Health Policy and Management, with a minor in Business Administration. I’m from Charlotte but most of my family lives in Georgia, so Atlanta is like my second home (after Chapel Hill, of course!). In my free time, I enjoy running, listening to all kinds of music, and spending time with family. My on campus involvement includes being a Bonner Leader through the Campus Y and an NC Fellow! Both programs are cohort-based, and I feel so lucky to have been able to find such wonderful community niches on campus.  Off campus, I volunteer with Blue Ribbon Mentor-Advocate to help promote academic mentorship and engagement amongst CHCCS students through tutorial and program support. Growing up with family has made me realize how much I love working with kids, and I feel this emboldened by my work with Blue Ribbon!

With Blue Ribbon as my community partner for Bonner, I’ve worked on the grantwriting side and pitched twice to receive grants towards various within Blue Ribbon’s Youth Leadership Institute. I applied to this class because I wanted to be on the other side of the grant-writing process: the gratifying and fulfilling experience of giving back to an organization that gives to its community. I’ve been able to glean so many things about philanthropy from a variety of guest speakers and readings, as well through current event topics we discuss in class about the functioning of nonprofits in various sectors of public service.  My role in class has been on the community outreach committee, where I emailed our RFP to various organizations that aligned with the mission of IMPACT NC, as well as made folders to share the received application materials with our class. Additionally, I will facilitate communicating our questions with organizations, as well as their questions for us, throughout the grant reviewing process. A lot of our grant-reviewing process has been done via Google Drive, and it is really cool to see how technology plays a fundamental role in our class in communicating with in the community and with one another!  I am excited to see how our reviewing process will unfold in the final weeks of class as we hone in on the applications we will fund.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Feature Student: Olivia Jackson-Jordan

I am from Huntersville, North Carolina and am a junior here at UNC. I am double majoring in Political Science and Global Studies with a minor in Women and Gender Studies. I am involved in lots of really awesome groups here on campus. I am a Lead Organizer for a group called Students for Education Reform, an organization that fights for educational justice on the local, state, and national level. I am also involved in the Refugee Community Partnership Bridge Builders Program that pairs UNC students and local families that have come to the area as refugees. I serve as a resource for the family and try to make their transition a little bit easier. I was fortunate enough to have both my roommate and my sister take this class before me. They both encouraged me to apply and were able to tell me about the incredible opportunities that this class provides. I am interested in working in the non-profit sector after I graduate and so I applied in the hopes that I would be able to learn more about the philanthropy process. Although I will probably spend most of my life on the other end of grants, I think that it is really important to know where the money for grants comes from and the process of how boards decide where their money goes. I have really enjoyed learning more about what makes a good grant application. As we have started reading applications, it is really interesting to see which ones stand out and why. This class is a really great way to learn more about the philanthropy process while also having the opportunity to have a positive impact on our state. I am so glad that I have been able to participate!

Feature Student: Anne Marie Hagerty

I am a broadcast journalism major with a music and history minor from Raleigh, NC. I volunteer with Musical Empowerment, a nonprofit that provides free music lessons to kids on campus and works as their video production intern. I enjoy painting, singing, dancing, photography and running.
I grew up in small, rural North Carolina towns and witness immense need in my local schools and communities. Many of the childhood friends I knew as talented and curious children have gone on to careers in drugs and crime because those traits and talents were not fostered. An organization working to provide mentorship or teaching a skill set could have changed the narrative of some of my friend's lives, which is why I think philanthropy is important.