Below is an example of an excellent Student Mini-Grant application. The reasons why it was successful, which you should keep in mind when drafting your own application, are below.
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Name: Students Helping Others Choose Knowledgeably (SHOCK) Substance Resistance Program
Date: Ongoing every Friday
Time: 1:30pm - 3:30pm
Location: Various Ann Arbor Public Schools Elementary Schools
Number of Students Participating: 17 University Students
Expected Audience: 50-60 per performance, 12 performances, for an approximate total of 650 elementary school children
SHOCK is a student-initiated, student-led theatrical troupe that travels to a different Ann Arbor Public Schools (AAPS) elementary school each Friday to perform an original hour-long production promoting substance resistance education. All skits are unique creations of the 17-member cast, they highlight important drug facts and issues using age-appropriate characters such as Sponge Bob Square Pants and Harry Potter. This is SHOCK's third year in existence, and it has already directly influenced 35 University students and over 800 AAPS fifth-grade students.
[Remember, the first two prompts are required, one or more of the last five optional prompts is required.]
A dedicated group of first-year students conceived SHOCK in 2001 with a vision of promoting substance resistance education using drama. A completely student-directed endeavor- each student must play an active, team-oriented role in the achieving the group's goals. From recruitment to props to scheduling performances with schools, students manage the group without outside assistance. Elections are held each spring to select a director, producer, costume manager, drug researcher and educator, website designer, historian, soundtrack artist, artistic manager, and transportation coordinator. Each member of the cast specializes in a distinct role and the group recognizes that each member is vitally important to the success of SHOCK.
Without theatre, SHOCK would not have been able to impacts the lives of over 800 AAPS youth. Few forms of teaching captivate children as well as performance making our approach to drug education one of few that students actually enjoy and understand. As one AAPS fifth-grade student said in a "thank you" letter to the cast, "I don't understand reading too much. But what you guys did was you guys did acting and music so that I could understand." Unfortunately, standardized test scores are often the sole basis for teacher evaluation, and most teachers do not have time to alter their teaching styles to better serve different types of learners. SHOCK recognizes that students' learning styles do not fit one standard mold and uses theatre as a way to engage their minds in a way that is appealing to them.
Not only does theatre enhance the understanding of the students SHOCK visits, it also has served as a catalyst for cast members' own personal growth. Theatre is one of few mediums that requires using a team approach to achieve success. The cast members quickly recognized that they would have to overcome differences in personalities and backgrounds in order to make the impact we so desired. Theatre became a comfort zone and the place where seventeen diverse individuals joined for a common purpose.
In addition, theatre has served as a bridge between the University and Ann Arbor communities. SHOCK has quickly established itself as a foremost resource for AAPS fifth-grade substance resistance educational programs. The cast considers itself as ambassadors to the local community in which the University is so closely intertwined.
SHOCK was born out of the Michigan Community Scholars Program, a living-learning community that attempts to model the values of a diverse democracy. Although no longer directly associated with the program, SHOCK connects our academic studies and "real world" experiences to make a difference in the lives of children. For the 35 current and former members of SHOCK, this has been an invaluable experience. Every Friday from 1 to 3 pm, SHOCK cast members forget the stresses of daily life and focus on giving a memorable and educational performance for each fifth-grade audience. Theatre bonds the group and turns the cast into friends instead of simply colleagues.
Drug education is an extremely challenging topic to discuss with fifth-grade students. Unfortunately, in today's world, we cannot afford to let our children grow up without it. SHOCK uses theatre to bring these very complex social issues to their level while also keeping the students interested. The terms "education" and "fun" are hardly ever synonymous, but SHOCK's use of theatre and humor conveys important messages about drug use, choice and avoidance in a enjoyable, entertaining way.
Three-quarters of SHOCK's inaugural cast had no acting experience. However, together the cast members created and performed an original hour-long performance. They also managed all the aspects of a major production, from costumes and sets to blocking and diction. The cast became more confident and improved their public speaking skills. They realized that art is not some stuffy subject left to historians, but something that can be molded to suit everyone's interests and needs.
Total Funding Secured: $450.00
We expect to hear back from the Ginsburg Center by October 2
Total Income from Tickets: $0
Total Income: $450.00
Total Expenses: $635.30
Total Amount Requested from Arts at Michigan: $240.00
Financial Contact Person Information:
Name: John Doe
or Fund: 10000