Saturday, March 31, 2012

Bemley Scholar Adwait Walimbe Seeks Computer Science Degree from University of Minnesota

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to award a Dr. Jesse Bemley Scholarship in the amount of $11,500 to BDPA Southern Minnesota student member Adwait WalimbeThis is the largest single college scholarship ever awarded in the history of our foundation.  Adwait is using this scholarship to pursue a Computer Science degree from the University of Minnesota.

There have been thousands of high school students competing in our national High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championships over the past quarter-century. Only two of those students (Yaa Kwansa and Brittany Middleton) have ever been national HSCC champions in four consecutive years. Adwait is the first student in BDPA history to be a FIVE-TIME national HSCC champion!

Adwait is a remarkable young man and a role model for BDPA students all across the nation. He created his own IT consulting firm six years ago and through that firm he became the founder of his own start-up, Socialdecks - an online, flashcard-based education system.

We asked Adwait to share his thoughts about BDPA in the following testimonial:

My name is Adwait Walimbe, and I am currently attending the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. I joined the BDPA Southern Minnesota chapter Youth Computer Training Program (YCTP) as a 7th grader in 2006. Over the next five years I was a member of the High School Computer Competition (HSCC) team trained by BDPA Southern Minnesota chapter. Our team won the national HSCC championship in all five of those years (2007-2011).

I met some very influential mentors, volunteers and peers over the course of my participation in the program. YCTP is conducted from December through May in Rochester MN, with HSCC practice in June and July. The national HSCC championships take place in August.

I was an eager and motivated student during my first year in the program. I enjoyed working hard to absorb as much new knowledge as possible. My strategy was to always self-study in order to stay a week ahead. Because of my young age in 2006, I was ineligible to compete as part of the HSCC team. I used that year as an opportunity to prepare for success over the next five. My passion for technology and the support of mentors who challenged me to succeed helped me build a solid foundation for success as a member of the chapter’s HSCC team over the next five years.

2010 Nat'l HSCC Champs!
I served as the ‘Technical Lead’ on my team in the first two years (2007-2008). I later grew into the role as ‘Project Manager’ over the next three years (2009-2011). Over the years, I worked with a group of smart, talented students who had very different team dynamics. The one consistent factor in all five years is that we were all motivated to do well at the national HSCC championship.
In 2012 I accepted a leadership position on the BDPA Southern Minnesota chapter board of directors. I am currently the chapter’s vice president of technology and I hope to contribute to the growth of our chapter.

My BDPA experiences, especially the advice from my BDPA mentors, led me to decision to attend the University of Minnesota where I pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science with an emphasis in Software Engineering. Through BDPA I completed an internship last year with Mayo Clinic. I recently accepted a summer internship as a program manager with Microsoft.

Adwait is a shining example of the BDPA vision to advance the careers of people in the Information Technology industry from the classroom to the boardroom. Can any of us doubt that Adwait Walimbe is the future face of technology?!

Friday, March 30, 2012

Grant Declination: Starbucks Foundation (BDPA New York)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) learned this month that Starbucks Foundation denied our letter of inquiry (LOI). We used our LOI to request permission to submit a full grant proposal on behalf of the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program hosted by our BDPA New York chapter.

The declination message read as follows:

Dear BDPA Education and Technology Foundation,

Thank you for submitting a letter of inquiry for the Starbucks Youth Action Grants program. We appreciate your time and effort.

Unfortunately, your organization was not selected to submit a full grant application for the 2012 grant cycle.

Only a small percentage of the organizations that submit letters of inquiry will continue in the application process. These organizations and their programs closely align with our grant program guidelines and are located within our geographic priority areas.

Due to the volume of requests we receive, we cannot provide each organization with detailed feedback regarding the decline of their letter of inquiry.

We regret that we cannot support every worthy organization and again thank you for your interest in the Starbucks Foundation.

We wish you ongoing success in your efforts.

The Starbucks Foundation Team

BETF will continue to actively work with any interested local BDPA chapter on fundraising efforts. For example, we have created an online fundraiser to help raise college scholarship funds for BDPA New York chapter's HSCC students.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Grant Proposal: Procter & Gamble Fund (BDPA Cincinnati)

BDPA Cincinnati chapter and the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) completed a joint grant proposal to the Procter & Gamble Fund seeking $25,692 in funding for the SITES program in southwest Ohio.   We have high hopes for this funding based on the high level of P&G employee involvement with BDPA Cincinnati chapter. The current chapter president (Clarence Larcarte), CAC chairperson (Patrick Nelson) and BETF Liaison (Ellery Lewis) are all employed by Procter & Gamble.

Wish us luck! Also, you can support BDPA Cincinnati chapter with an online donation to its annual High School Computer Competition scholarship fund.

Community Philanthropy: It's Not Just for the Wealthy Anymore

Until somewhat recently in the U.S., community foundations were pretty much the province of the wealthy. The same goes for the rest of institutional philanthropy—family foundations, donor-advised funds, etc. But something may be happening to community philanthropy in the U.S. and around the world that reflects the “mutuality of philanthropy,” the sense that “community philanthropy is for everyone,” according to Nick Deychakiwsky, senior program officer of the C.S. Mott Foundation.

Read the rest of the Nonprofit Quarterly article.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Grant Proposal: Costco Wholesale Foundation (BDPA Middle Tennessee)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked with its BETF Liaison (Homer Britton) from the BDPA Middle Tennessee chapter to complete a $3,000 grant proposal to the Costco Wholesale Foundation. Our request for funding was sent to the Costco store manager in Nashville TN. We need the funding to support the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program currently ongoing in that city.

We anticipate an answer within the next few weeks. Wish us luck!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Social Philanthropy: Raising Money on YouTube and Twitter

by Amy Sample Ward
The Nonprofit Times

Money is always a hot topic of conversation at SXSW from new start-ups looking for venture funds to nonprofits looking for philanthropic support, all for innovative ways of changing and shaping our communities and the world. One panel, moderated by Cheryl Contee of Fission Strategy, focused on the conversation from the social philanthropy perspective; that is, what are various kinds of organizations doing to raise money though socially engaged channels like YouTube and Twitter. Contee framed the conversation with a great question, asking if we see social media as democratizing voices, giving anyone with connection to the Internet the ability to share a message, how do those same tools make money just as freely accessible?

Ramya Raghavan, Nonprofits and Activism Manager at Google/YouTube, says that she sees two trends in the future of online giving through video. The first is engaging a donor at the first step and keeping them engaged. Many people donate online yet have no long-term connection to the nonprofit organization or project. "We are seeing people through YouTube create a long term relationship with donors. Like charity:water's thank you campaign: they came out with a series of personalized 'thank you' videos to their donors and are showcasing their staff in these videos." The second trend is live-streaming, where video is both a real-time feed and experience as well as an archived resource to be replayed. Last month, the American Foundation for Equal Rights live-streamed "8", a play featuring George Clooney, Martin Sheen, and Jane Lynch, about California's Proposition 8 trial. It had hundreds of thousands of live viewers. Certainly having celebrities helps generate views, but it is just an example of what you can do with live-streaming.

Read the rest of The Nonprofit Times article.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Grant Proposal: Northern Trust Centennial Fund

BDPA Chicago chapter president Pamela Sexton and the chapter’s BETF liaison Diane Hampton worked with the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to submit a $7,500 grant proposal to the Northern Trust Centennial Fund.

Established in 1989, the Northern Trust Centennial Fund for the Education of Children is an endowment fund held at The Chicago Community Trust that commemorated the 100 year anniversary of Northern Trust. The purpose of the fund is to positively impact student learning and academic achievement in the greater Chicago metropolitan area. The fund concentrates on identifying promising, effective small programs that, through a grant from the fund, can greatly expand their services to children. The Centennial Fund is invitation only and unfortunately cannot accept unsolicited proposals.

Northern Trust has a seat on the BDPA Chicago Corporate Advisory Council. It was through this CAC representative that we rec’d an invitation to submit our grant proposal. We had to turn it around in 24 hours to make the deadline … and we did it!

Wish us luck as we await the response.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Connect With Monique: What Younger Members Want From Your Chapter

by Monique Berry, president
National BDPA

Your chapter is growing older. You say you want to recruit younger members – but do you really?

Many people in their 20's and 30s hear your desire to have younger adults involved – but don't see what they need in you chapter.

Here are six things you can do to make your chapter involvement more appealing to this age group:
  1. Make programs more relevant to younger members -- A lot of the programming they see is for the more advanced member. Younger members also need help with things such as leadership development, project management, and other skills necessary to advance in their careers.Make programs more interactive or hands-on.
  2. Why do they need to attend if all they are going to do is listen to someone read a Power Point presentation? -- They could just as easily read that information off a web site. Growing up, their formal education used a lot of cooperative learning, problem solving and other interactive strategies. Why does adult learning have to be so dry?
  3. Get younger adults involved ASAP. -- Younger adults have an action orientation. They don't want to wait several months to get involved. By that time, they will find another opportunity to give their time and attention.
  4. Make leadership opportunities accessible. -- By the time they are 30, many people are on a second or third career. Yet, frequently when they join a chapter they are expected to start back in the lowest level of the volunteer path – serving on a committee. In some local groups it takes 6-10 years to move through the chairs to be President. Many younger adults don't know if they will be in the same field or location in ten years – so why get involved?
  5. Be open to new ideas. -- Young adults were trained through school to problem solve and ask why. Sometimes when younger adults bring up ideas, they are often ignored or shot down by members. Just because they are young, doesn't mean they don't have good ideas.
  6. Be truly welcoming to younger members. -- I often here complaints that while chapters claim to want them as members, the younger members feel they are welcome to be part of the chapter – as long as they accept the way it's always been, don't ask questions, and do exactly what they are told to do.
Younger adults are the future of our chapters. We need to find ways to create a place they can call home within our organization. It may take some hard work and real change to pull it off, but how can we afford to not do it?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Take Five: Temitope Sonuyi (BDPA Los Angeles)

Temitope Sonuyi is a remarkable man. Temitope earned his masters in electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. A few years ago he decided to start his own business ... so he founded Duffled. Duffled is a text messaging (SMS) marketing tool.

In any case, Temitope is making his mark as an enthusiastic volunteer instructor at the weekend computer camp sessions hosted by BDPA Los Angeles chapter. He has supported the training of students that represent Los Angeles in regional and national computer competitions.

We asked Temitope to participate in our 'Take Five' Interview Series:

    Temitope Teaches!
  1. How did you get involved with BDPA? - I heard about it through the friend of a friend. I got connected with the local chapter and volunteered for helping out with the program.
  2. What is the most rewarding aspect of working with BDPA? - There are so many multi-layered and rewarding aspects of working with BDPA but to pick a couple I would say:
    • Seeing young minds become skilled in the craft of web programming and then teamwork. It is rewarding to be a part of the enlightenment process with the kids.
    • Seeing the competitive and highly skilled teams perform at the national convention.
  3. Can you share a 'success story' about any of your past HSCC students? - My involvement with the program has been over the past two years ... so we are still seeing the kids stories being written. I do think we will have some success stories from our students in the past two years; but as of now we are a work in progress.
  4. What would future evolution or change would you like to see in BDPA's STEM-based training? - More collaborative efforts during the training period prior to the competition (Either between programs (sharing lesson plans and strategies) or students (question/answer forum thing).
  5. Any advice for people considering a donation to BETF? - Give till you can't give no more.

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) appreciates Temitope for taking time to share his insights for this blog post. Our hope is that those of you reading this 'Take Five' interview will be inspired enough to support the college scholarship fundraising currently underway for BDPA Los Angeles chapter student members.

Rest In Peace: Erni Moore (1958-2011)

We, the entire BDPA community, were saddened to learn of the recent passing of Erni Moore ... founder and long-time president of BDPA Greater Tampa Bay chapter ... on this date in 2011. Erni enabled many students and IT professionals in central Florida to experience the hands-on benefits of BDPA membership as evidenced by this June 2002 chapter newsletter.

In fact, Erni may be the only chapter president to ever host a national BDPA conference that was not held in his or her chapter city. BDPA Greater Tampa Bay chapter, under Erni's leadership, successfully hosted the 2002 National BDPA Technology Conference held in Orlando, Florida.

God has blessed our BDPA family with Erni for several seasons. His life and spirit has truly been a blessing. His legacy lives through his wife, Tracy, and their three daughters. Erni's legacy will continue to provide hope and inspiration to all who knew him.

Rest In Peace Erni

Friday, March 23, 2012

Connect With Monique: The 11 Secrets of Highly Influential IT Leaders

by Monique Berry, president
National BDPA

I was given this book, "The 11 Secrets of Highly Influential IT Leaders" by a friend. I must admit, I didn't put it at the top of my reading list. Something in the mystery genre is more my speed. Having read many IT and general management books I thought it would be good for those nights when getting to sleep can be difficult BUT I have to say this was not your typical management book and once started I needed to finish it.

It is a very easy to read book, about the right length and packed full (well 11 actually) of some extremely useful information.

The author has done an excellent job in researching what makes a successful IT leader and put the answers into an easy to understand style that makes you want to start putting them into action straight away.

Each reader will relate to different parts of the book, based on his/her individual experiences and will find different parts to be either commonplaces or insightful. No surprise, since we each bring very different experiences and beliefs to the book. But I'm sure that anyone who faces off with end users and business stakeholders will take away something of value.

I recommend this book to CIOs, IT Directors, IT Managers, Program and Project managers and those that want to aspire to those positions. I believe you will truly learn something from this book that will help you to become more successful.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Grant Proposal: PacifiCorp Foundation (BDPA Los Angeles)

BDPA Los Angeles chapter president John Malonson worked closely with the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to complete a grant proposal to the PacifiCorp Foundation. We submitted our funding request to this western region foundation asking for $3,000 in funding to support the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program in Los Angeles.

Wish us luck!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Delta Gateway Foundation

The Delta Gateway Foundation is a philanthropic organization that exists to support educational and social initiatives that empower individuals, particularly women of African descent.

In January 1996, the Cincinnati Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority began to manage the proceeds from the sale of real estate that the chapter had owned. In 2003, that effort evolved into a new group that began the research and laid the groundwork to establish the Delta Gateway Foundation. This charitable foundation funds grants (usually in the $500 - $2,500 range) for girls and women that promote:
  1. Educational and scholastic achievement
  2. Social well being and quality of life
  3. Youth development and social change
You can learn more about DGF from its brochure.

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) from a member of the BDPA Cincinnati chapter. I suspect that there may be local fraternity and sorority chapters all over the nation with similiar nonprofit foundations. Have you checked these possible funding sources out in your community?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Grant Proposal: Best Buy Community Grant (BDPA New York)

Our chapter liaison for BDPA New York is Shawn Reid. Shawn worked with the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) to submit a grant proposal to Best Buy Store #478 (Long Island, NY) as part of its community grant program. We've asked for funding to support the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program in New York City.

This is a funding source available to all nonprofits ... including all 45 local BDPA chapters. The first step is to identify and talk with the store manager at your local Best Buy.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Connect With Monique: Get Involved and Raise Your Profile

by Monique Berry, president
National BDPA

Membership offers many opportunities for you to get involved in BDPA activities and raise your profile within the global technology community. Don't just join, join in!

Volunteering - Volunteering can give you great satisfaction and enjoyment while enhancing your professional and personal development, as well as providing benefit to others.

You can get involved by
  • Becoming a BDPA mentor;
  • Helping to author new publications;
  • Helping to organize meetings and events for your Local Chapter;
  • Nominate yourself for a seat on one of the committees, including the Board of Directors;
  • Promoting BDPA activities in schools, colleges, universities and in places of employment;
  • Speaking at a Chapter meeting;
  • Submitting research papers to the BDPA journals;
  • Working on the conference team.
Local Chapters - With 45 local chapters, there is a community of BDPA members near you which provide a host of professional networking opportunities. The level of involvement is up to you. Simply go along to an event or get more involved by joining a committee and helping put together the program of events. You may even be interested in giving a talk - no matter the amount of time you can commit, your Local Chapter would be delighted to hear from you.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Grant Proposal: Cisco Community Impact Cash Grant (BDPA Dallas)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked with our BDPA Dallas chapter liaison Denise Holmes to complete a grant proposal to the Richardson (TX) Cisco Civic Council. We hope that the local Cisco employees will support our application for a Cisco Community Impact Cash Grant.

The proposal seeks funding in support of the chapter's 2012 SITES program
. Cisco has a 2-part process. The first part is to give a general overview of our program and why we want the funding and how our program aligns with the Cisco funding guidelines. If the local civic council is interested ... then we will be invited to submit a full grant proposal. We completed the first part of the process this afternoon.

Wish us luck!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Take Five: Joe McMahon (BDPA Hampton Roads)

Joe McMahon is one of only two people in the history of BDPA to be the founder of two different BDPA chapters. He agreed to participate in our 'Take Five' interview series:

  1. How did you get involved in working with BDPA? - While serving as faculty at Southern University as a Navy Officer in the ROTC program, I received a request from two BDPA members in the Baton Rouge area to help launch a new BDPA chapter. Based on my activities in the community, I believed the mission of BDPA would provide the catalyst for increasing the technology based workforce opportunities. Within a year after launching the Baton Rouge Chapter, I retired from the military and transferred to Virginia Beach where I founded a second chapter, BDPA Hampton Roads.
  2. What is the most rewarding aspect of working with BDPA? - The National BDPA Technology Conference featuring the professional workshops, high school computer competition, and IT Showcase is a tremendous outlet for sharing ideas, showcasing talent and networking across the country. It is a great honor to have the Chief of Naval Operations and former Assistant Secretary of the Navy accept our invitation to serve as keynote speakers.
  3. Tell us about a defining moment in your life? - My most defining moment was discovering the value of being prepared vice getting prepared. When opportunity knocks it's looking for someone. Many years ago, I lost out on an a career defining opportunity I truly desired, but rightfully didn't deserve. Despite having an equal opportunity to prepare, I did not fully invest the time and energy required to be the best candidate. Someone else was better prepared and received the opportunity. Since, I've worked to target specific areas of interest and consistently improve my skills. Since, I've enjoyed retiring from one successful career and happily moved on to a second career.
  4. Who is your hero and why? - My mother raised two kids as a single parent. Each and everyday, I'm amazed at how much I appreciate her lessons on life and the safe haven she provided. Our lives were much simpler than I enjoy today. However, the foundation she provided was strong.
  5. Any advice for people considering a donation to BETF? - BDPA serves communities to provide technology based programs where students can build on the skills and immediately apply them to the needs of the workforce. BETF provides opportunities to lift students to next level through educational scholarships and funds for programs. BETF provides resources to help students throughout the US. Take the time to explore what BETF offers.

By the way ... are you wondering who was the other person in BDPA history to be the founder of two chapters? Norman Mays! Norman is the founder of BDPA chapters in Washington DC and Cleveland.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Grant Disbursement: BDPA New Jersey ($350)

BDPA New Jersey chapter president Goldie Bonney and chapter vice president Ricardo Fullerton submitted an IRS Tax Receipt Form seeking $350 grant funding from the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF). BETF approved the grant disbursement. The funds will be used to support the Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program in the Newark, New Jersey area.

We encourage all 45 local BDPA chapters to aggressively work with BETF in support of their funding needs. Our goal is to write at least five grant proposal each week on behalf of BDPA programs, scholarships and services. Shouldn't your chapter take advantage of this funding activity?

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Where Are They Now? BDPA Chicago Chapter Presidents

BDPA Chicago became the 14th chapter in the nation when it began on March 15, 1986. The chapter had eight founding members (Marvin Walker, President; Hazel Beason, Vice President; Anthony Pittman, Treasurer; Michelle Walker, Recording Secretary; Wallace Neal, Education Chairperson; Roy Peeples, Public Relations Chairperson; Greg Walker, Finance Chairperson; and Fidelis Umeh, Member)

The chapter has a potent legacy in BDPA history that includes 'BDPA Chapter of the Year' honors in 1991-1993, 2000 and 2005. I used BDPA Chicago chapter as my role model when I served as BDPA Cincinnati chapter president in 1999-2001. It amazes me that BDPA Chicago maintained its spot as the chapter with the largest membership for over a decade. The ability of this chapter to recruit and retain members over the years is simply remarkable.

The chapter hosted national BDPA technology conferences in 1988 ('Growth and Success by Design')and 2001 ('Empowering the Nation Through Information').

BDPA Chicago students won national high school computer competition (HSCC) two times (1994 and 2006). The students from these three championship years are: Joseph Huggins (2006), Nickesha King (1994), Demmie Quinones (1994), Lee Reed (2006), Andreaus Robinson (2006), Joey Rojas (2004), Maurice Shelton (2006) and Walter Webster (2004).
I hope that these HSCC alumni are still connected to BDPA. We want HSCC testimonials from each of these young people if they can be located.

Five of the past BDPA Chicago chapter presidents (Ollie Morgan, Milt Haynes, Ricky Penick, Reggie Gardner and Yvette Graham) also served as members of the National BDPA Executive Committee. It would be great if we could hear from each of the past BDPA Chicago chapter presidents:

Where are they now?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Grant Declination: Harley-Davidson Foundation (National BDPA)

The folks at the Harley-Davidson Foundation informed the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) that our grant proposal in support of National BDPA was turned down. BETF worked with National BDPA vice president Allison Aheart to create the grant proposal.

The declination letter read as follows

Dear Ms. Aheart,

Thank you for submitting your proposal for funding to our Employee Charitable Contributions Committee. With our entire Harley-Davidson family, our Foundation builds strong, skilled and sustainable communities where we work. To that end, we help to fulfill dreams through partnerships with many worth charitable organizations.

The Harley-Davidson Foundation offers support to qualified non-profit, tax-exempt organizations that meet the basic needs of the communities where we work, improve the lives of our stakeholders and encourage social responsibility. That support is centered primarily where our manufacturing facilities and Milwaukee Corporation headquarters are located.

Unfortunately, we feel your organization does not meet our criteria at this time. For further information on our Foundation guidelines, please visit our web-site at

We wish you much success in your fundraising efforts.

Mary Anne Martiny, manager
The Harley-Davidson Foundation

BETF will continue to seek out funding to support the STEM-based training that National BDPA provides to hundreds of students around the country.

Convergys Community Relations Program

Convergys supports specific, localized giving programs in every country in which they operate globally.

They support a wide range of educational initiatives that promote accessibility, sustainability, and self-sufficiency such as building schools and libraries, supporting teacher training, literacy, and mentoring programs, and enabling technical learning environments.

They build relationships with and create a lasting impact on the diverse communities in which we live, work, and serve around the world. They foster a sincere spirit of giving and volunteerism and challenge their employees to lead civic efforts that shape the future of their communities.

Their employees dedicate countless volunteer hours, in kind donations, and financial contributions “giving back” to their communities, both individually and through their Community Action Teams.

The Convergys Foundation seeks community stability and prosperity by improving literacy and enabling workforce readiness as well as supporting arts and culture.

Since its formation in 1998, they remain committed to improving the quality of life in communities around the world where their employees live and work. Corporate citizenship is one of their core values that is proudly embraced by their employees. They have been internationally recognized for a strong commitment to social responsibility.

With limited resources, Convergys cannot fund every worthy endeavor and the number of requests they receive far exceeds our ability to support them. Convergys evaluates every request received in order to determine alignment with their giving priorities, business interests and the impact it has on communities in which they operate. Priority is given to projects and programs that make our communities better places in which to live, learn and work; with measurable goals and objectives; that clearly demonstrate effectiveness and innovation and can show evidence of long-term viability. Priority is not given to projects and programs that already receive funds via United Way campaigns or via Convergys' participation in the Fine Arts Fund or similar community campaigns.

Convergys, through its community contribution programs, will not make donations to individuals, religious organizations that are denominational or sectarian in purpose, political organizations or candidates seeking political office, organizations that discriminate based on race, color, creed, religion, national origin, citizenship, gender, age, physical or mental disability, political belief, sexual orientation, marital or family status, pregnancy, veteran status, economic status or other legally protected status.

Further, Convergys charitable giving does not include donations to marketing initiatives such as sponsorships for sporting events, celebrations, parades or festivals devoid of a charitable or business component. All recipients must have tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

WHEN TO APPLY. Convergys accepts requests year-round. When submitting materials, please provide as much lead-time as possible between the time of the request and the date by which funding is needed. They normally send notification within 90 days.

WRITTEN REQUESTS ARE REQUIRED. Provide a 1-2 page summary of the project which should include a description of mission and history of the organization, a brief description of the program for which support is requested including rationale, amount requested, communities and number of individuals that will be served, goals, objectives and action plan of the project, expected quantifiable outcomes, methods of evaluating and reporting results, and additional sources of financial support for the project.

Please submit your proposal to:

Convergys Community Relations Program
201 East Fourth Street, Suite 1400
Cincinnati, OH 45202

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Connect With Monique: My BDPA Elevator Speech

by Monique Berry, president
National BDPA

Every now and then the question come up about an elevator speech. I also get questioned about the BDPA member proposition. I'm passionate about BDPA so I can definitely talk about it for 30 seconds. To those of you who need a little assistance this one's for you!
BDPA is a community of information technology professionals and sponsor companies working together to develop mutually beneficial relationships. Through networking, chapter program meetings, and the annual conference, BDPA members gain a competitive advantage in positioning themselves, their small businesses and employer firms successfully in the marketplace. BDPA offers members professional development, leadership and networking events. BDPA is the only organization dedicated to creating professional advancement opportunities in the IT industry from the classroom to the boardroom."
What about you? Please share your thoughts.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Costco Wholesale Foundation

Costco Wholesale Foundation is a funding source available to most nonprofits around the nation. Here is some information that might help you in your effort to seek funding from Costco:
  1. Donation and Grant Eligibility Guidelines - In keeping with Costco Wholesale’s giving guidelines their warehouses and regional offices specifically support programs focusing on children, education and health and human services. They would like to respond favorably to all requests however the needs are far greater than their allocated resources. Therefore it is not possible for Costco to accommodate all requests.
  2. Costco Warehouse Donations - For local organizations and groups, which focus on children, education or health and human services, provide your local Costco Warehouse Manager with a copy of your IRS tax letter with your 501(c)3 status and a written request on your organizations letterhead. To determine your closest warehouse click here --
  3. Regional Office Donations - For donations which impact a broader community or region, focusing on children, education or health and human services provide the regional office with a copy of your IRS tax letter noting your 501(c)3 status and a written request on your organizations letterhead.
  4. Qualifying for a Grant - Costco specifically focuses on programs supporting children, education and health and human services. The United Way, Children’s Hospital and the Red Cross are a major focus in their charitable giving. Costco Wholesale is committed to supporting charitable and community activities in the markets where they do business.
  5. Grants - The Costco Charitable Contributions Committee is charged with overseeing charitable giving and encouraging decentralization of charitable giving so that the greatest impact is where Costco’s employees and members live and work. Only 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations, which meet their giving guidelines and focus areas, are considered. See the Frequently Asked Questions and Costco Grant Application for specific details and required documents to be considered for review.
Is your nonprofit interested in pursuing funds from Costco Wholesale Foundation?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Grant Proposal: Fifth Third Bank Foundation (BDPA Charlotte)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked with BDPA Charlotte chapter president Markus Beamer to submit a $5,000 grant proposal to the Fifth Third Bank Foundation. We seek the funding to support the outstanding Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program for Charlotte-area high school students.

Wish us luck!

This Week in BDPA (Mar 11-17)

BDPA is a strong offering of programs in 45 cities around the nation. Are you taking advantage of these programs? Here is a weekly preview of upcoming events gathered from the centralized BDPA calendar :
Please let us know of other BDPA events that we may have missed.

You can always find BDPA programs, services or networking activity online at places such as:
BDPA supports your efforts for career advancement in the IT industry. Our hope is that you find reasons to provide tax-deductible support to our Causes, our HSCC Scholarship Funds or Your Causes!

We encourage all BDPA leaders to take advantage of the centralized BDPA Groupsite Calendar to post your upcoming events!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Letter of Inquiry: Cisco Community Impact Grant (BDPA Boston)

BDPA Boston chapter's liaison to the BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is Tim Wilson. Tim worked closely with BETF to complete a grant proposal seeking $3,000 from the local Cisco Civic Council located in New England/Boxborough area. We submitted an online letter of inquiry (LOI)through the Cisco Community Impact Grant process. If successful, we will receive permission to submit the full grant proposal.

BDPA Boston chapter needs the funding to rejuvenate its Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program. The plan is to work towards having one or more college students, hopefully alumni from the chapter's High School Computer Competition (HSCC) program, participating in the 2012 BDPA IT Showcase.

Wish us luck!

HSCC Testimonial: Curtis Mimes (Cincinnati, 2011)

I met Taft High School student Curtis Mimes last summer at the BDPA Midwest Regional High School Computer Competition (HSCC) and IT Showcase when I served as a judge for the programming event. I saw right away that Curtis was a leader with great potential. One of the guests at that event was Cincinnati Bell chief information officer Kevin Murray. Kevin had nothing but high praises for Curtis based on his performance as a summer intern within the Cincinnati Bell information technology department.

Our blog is pleased to share the thoughts of this young squire about his BDPA experiences:

My local training with BDPA Cincinnati chapter was short --- I joined the program late because I had just made up with my mother and moved back to Cincinnati. I found the program exhilarating, and I loved the chance to improve my problem-solving skills by working on complex, timed business problems. Our instructor, Mr. Frank Hill, was very engaging in his lessons about ASP.NET, VB.NET, and mySQL—all very marketable skills.

The National BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) championship was a valuable experience. The programming problem at the competition was more difficult than usual (according to Mr. Hill) by making us set up the databases for use. Although we did not win, the experience provided me something to strive towards. I am ecstatic that I got the opportunity to participate as a representative from the city of Cincinnati. I now know what “crunch time” feels like for a programmer. Between the banquets and the programming section of the test, I had a blast. Most importantly, I learned what I did know as well as what I didn't know.

My experience with BDPA affirmed that my career will be in the programming track. Also, it gave me the opportunity to experience website design. Although creating web applications will not be my main occupation, a few contracts on the side could be lucrative and fun. Since I knew what I wanted to do before I joined BDPA it did not change my career goals, but it did widen them.

BDPA impacts hundreds of students like Curtis each and every year in our youth technology programs. Our challenge is to find the money to fund the books, facilities, supplies, materials, lunches and other expenses. BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is committed to finding the necessary funds.

If you are inspired by Curtis' testimonial then we encourage you to make a donation to our college scholarship fund that supports BDPA Cincinnati chapter students.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Grant Proposal: Harris Foundation (BDPA Cincinnati)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked closely with its liaison from the BDPA Cincinnati chapter -- Ellery Lewis -- to complete work on a $5,000 grant proposal to The Harris Foundation. We requested the funding to support the growing Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program being offered in the greater Cincinnati area.

Wish us luck ... or do something on your own to support us!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Payroll Pledges: United Way of Central Indiana

We are very grateful to two members of the Eli Lilly team -- Timothy Coleman and George Whitfield -- who made payroll pledges to support BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) through the United Way of Central Indiana.

Our hope is that more BDPA supporters will take advantage of payroll deductions as a way to help us fund BDPA programs, scholarships and services.

Please feel free to reply to this post if you have questions or wish to discuss the idea further!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Grant Proposal: Joseph & Deidre Smialowski Philanthropy Fund

Joe Smialowski
BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is very proud of the guidance and inspiration provided to us in the past by its former director, Joseph Smialowski. As such, it was a pleasure to submit a funding request to his family foundation known as the Joseph & Deidre Smialowski Philanthropy Fund. We have asked them for support in funding the Dr. Jesse Bemley Scholarship Fund.

Wish us luck!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

BDPA Partnership Guide (Chicago)

BDPA Chicago is the largest and most well-funded local chapter in the nation. They have created a process to ensure a consistent flow of revenue from membership dues, fundraisers and corporate sales. The chapter took time to document a Partnership Guide that lays out the myriad of ways that a corporation can support the programs and services offered in Chicago.

Is this a document that can be replicated in the other 44 local BDPA chapters?

IBM Community Grants

Do you have any IBM employees working with your Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program? If so, you/your chapter may be eligible for an IBM Community Grant. Imagine what thousands of IBM employees can accomplish worldwide when they're given the tools to be effective volunteers, and they can access them online—anytime, anywhere. That's IBM On Demand Community.

Now imagine how much more valuable the volunteers can be to schools and other organizations, like BDPA, when they also have access to IBM equipment grants, reduced prices for selected hardware and software, and cash awards for the organizations where they donate their time.

This extraordinary combination of IBM employee expertise and innovative technology distinguishes IBM On Demand Community from all other corporate philanthropy initiatives.

"This is a powerful combination that stands to make an unprecedented impact on schools and community organizations worldwide," said Stanley S. Litow, vice president of IBM Corporate Community Relations. "We've dramatically increased the range of IBM equipment available to agencies where our employees volunteer, with even more incentives for those who use our on demand tools in their volunteer work."

IBM volunteers must be working with an eligible community service organization for an average of eight hours per month for five consecutive months to be eligible for either a cash or equipment grant.

"Our new Community Grants program strengthens IBM On Demand Community by leveraging the full strength of IBM innovation and technology," Litow continued. "We fully expect that the volunteer efforts of our employees, combined with IBM Community Grants, has the potential to make a lasting impact on organizations that provide some of society's most important services."

Any IBM employees reading this post?

Monday, March 5, 2012

Message from National BDPA President

Monique Berry
Membership offers many opportunities for you to get involved in BDPA activities and raise your profile within the global technology community. Don't just join, join in!

Volunteering - Volunteering can give you great satisfaction and enjoyment while enhancing your professional and personal development, as well as providing benefit to others.

You can get involved by:
  • Becoming a BDPA mentor;
  • Helping to author new publications;
  • Helping to organize meetings and events for your Local Chapter;
  • Nominate yourself for a seat on one of the committees, including the Board of Directors;
  • Promoting BDPA activities in schools, colleges, universities and in places of employment.
  • Speaking at a Chapter meeting;
  • Submitting research papers to the BDPA journals;
  • Working on the conference team.
Local Chapters - With 45 Local Chapters, there is a community of BDPA members near you which provide a host of professional networking opportunities. The level of involvement is up to you. Simply go along to an event or get more involved by joining a committee and helping put together the program of events. You may even be interested in giving a talk - no matter the amount of time you can commit, your Local Chapter would be delighted to hear from you.

Monique Berry, president
National BDPA

Grant Proposal: Caesars Foundation (BDPA Middle Tennessee)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked with its BDPA Middle Tennessee liaison Homer Britton to finalize a grant proposal seeking funding from Caesars Foundation. The written grant proposal has been sent to the president in control of Harrah's Casino in Memphis. We hope for a positive response from the folks at the Caesars Foundation. The funding, if approved, would be used to support the chapter's Student Information Technology Education & Scholarships (SITES) program.

Wish us luck!

Where Are They Now: 2001 Nat'l HSCC Champions (Memphis)

Anyone seen the 2001 National BDPA High School Computer Competition (HSCC) Champions?

The five-student team from Memphis BDPA, consisting of Robyn Nash, Brittany Middleton, Trevor Williams, Wesley Williams and Ayyub Wright, was presented "the gold" at the 2001 National BDPA Technology Conference in Chicago.

The 5-member team from Memphis earned their spot over about thirty others that trained at a five-month computer camp program for high school students. The computer camp program provides skills and instruction in the following areas: professional development, public speaking, basic computer skills, basic Internet skills and web site development. In addition, the students that were selected for the team focused on learning web site application programming and basic computer terminology.

The team has its own website complete with bios, photo gallery and chapter awards banquet memories. Are there similiar online tributes to national champions from other years?

Anyhow, we would love to hear from Robyn, Brittany, Trevor, Wesley or Ayyub. Where are they now?

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Grant Proposal: Raytheon Charitable Foundation (BDPA Los Angeles)

BDPA Los Angeles chapter president John Malonson sought out support from BDPA Education and Technology Foundation in order to submit a $6,000 grant proposal to the Raytheon Charitable Foundation.

Raytheon's philanthropic interests are strategically focused on math and science education. They give preference to regional projects that serve the broader community in locations where they have major facilities. Organizations recognized as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service code are eligible.

We’ll keep you informed of the results from this grant submission. Wish us luck!  Of course, you can help us in a more direct way by making a small donation to support college scholarships for the high school students being trained by BDPA Los Angeles chapter.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Grant Proposal: New York Community Trust (BDPA New York)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) worked with Shawn Reid (BETF Liaison for BDPA New York) on a $22,000 grant proposal to the New York Community Trust.

We need the funding in order to support the training of 25 students in the chapter's Student Information Technology Education & Scholarship (SITES) program. We anticipate a response by June 2012. Wish us luck!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Grant Proposal: Computer Science Collaboration Project (BDPA Los Angeles)

BDPA Education and Technology Foundation (BETF) is proud to report that our online mini-grant application to the Engaging Hispanic/Latino(a) Youth Leadership Team has been successfully submitted. We asked for funding to support the training of 50 high school students by our BDPA chapter in Los Angeles.

Our understanding is that we should learn the grant award decision from the Computer Science Collaboration Project team by mid-March.

John Malonson, Dr. Antonia Boadi and Beverly Allen
BETF appreciates the support of BDPA Los Angeles chapter president John Malonson, Intelligence Community Center of Academic Excellence director Dr. Antonia Boadi from Cal-State University (Dominguez Hills) and BDPA Los Angeles chapter HSCC coordinator Beverly Allen. These are the leaders who provided us with information about this potential funding source.

Wish us luck! Better yet, please help us directly with a donation to the Brandon Gardner Memorial Scholarship in support of BDPA Los Angeles chapter high school students.