Mount Union Employees to Present Grants Workshop

May 14, 2012

ALLIANCE, Ohio — Two University of Mount Union professors will have an opportunity to share about their field at the American Sociological Association’s annual meeting in Denver, CO in August.

Susan Denning, director of stewardship and grants who also teaches part-time in the Department of Sociology, and Dr. Kathleen Piker-King, professor and chair of the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice, will conduct a workshop based on Denning’s grants course, which is seldom offered at the undergraduate level.

The pair was given a rare invitation to present the workshop, which will focus on giving teaching professionals and researchers tips on teaching grant-writing courses. Participants will receive materials they would need in order to create a grant-writing course and develop different aspects of the class. Denning began teaching the course three years ago at Piker-King’s request.

“I saw a skillset she had that we could use,” Piker-King said. “I saw it was a wonderful way of taking her expertise and giving our students the skills that would give them increased marketability.”

Denning’s course models grant-getting aspects by giving students experience in the various stages of grant writing.

“They have an opportunity to be a grant-maker, interview various organizations in Alliance and be on that side of the table in looking at what makes a good grant,” Denning said. “They also have partners in the community of non-profits who need money to achieve a goal and as a result of that, they get the experience of writing a grant as well as giving a grant.

Both Denning and Piker-King are looking forward to an opportunity to discuss Mount Union’s sociology program with other professionals. They noted that the workshop ties in to the responsible citizenship portion of Mount Union’s mission.

“I’m eager to profile the exciting program that we have in sociology at Mount Union and to let other sociologists across the country see the level of excellence that we have here at Mount Union in this program,” Piker-King said.

“I am excited because I’m at a stage in my career where I’d like to think that I can help prepare the next generation of grant writers,” Denning said. “The opportunity to reach professionals and educators who are working with the next generation means that I can pass on what I know.” 

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