For 21 years, the Bright Ideas education grant program, sponsored by North Carolina’s Touchstone Energy cooperatives, has expanded learning opportunities in North Carolina classrooms by awarding grants to Tar Heel teachers for innovative, classroom-based projects that would not otherwise be funded.
The Bright Ideas education grant program was created in 1994 to support teachers and enhance education by engaging students in meaningful learning projects that encourage creative approaches. Bright Ideas grants are available to K-12 teachers for innovative projects in any subject. Educators can apply individually or as a team by submitting a simple online application. Maximum grant amounts for teachers submitting a grant application through EnergyUnited are up to $2,000 per applicant.
To apply, teachers must include a budget, explain the creative elements, implementation, goals and evaluation of the project, and have approval from the school principal. Applications will be judged in a competitive evaluation process, and judges will be on the lookout for projects that feature innovation and creativity. Teachers can learn more and apply online at www.ncbrightideas.com.
EnergyUnited awarded 47 teachers with over $40,000 in Bright Ideas education grants to fund innovative classroom learning projects in 2015. Nearly 9,000 students at schools in 19 counties across the co-op’s service territory, participated in Bright Ideas projects funded by EnergyUnited. The grant recipients use the money to fund creative, hands-on classroom projects that fall outside traditional school budgets.
Winning projects include anything from students building a garden, learning about robots and creating various projects with LEGOs. EnergyUnited had a great time honoring the grant winners across our service territory with a special recognition luncheon.
“Thank you EnergyUnited for the Bright Ideas grant money. I was able to purchase the Legos to use in my classroom. Every time I use them, I tear up and get happy feeling because the kids are learning, having fun, and always some of my quietest/hardest students are the ones that are speaking out and sharing what they learned.”
— Judi Walker | Teacher | Lincoln Elementary | Rockingham County Schools
Since the Bright Ideas grant program began in 1994, EnergyUnited has contributed over $700,000 to local teachers. North Carolina’s 26 electric cooperatives collectively have awarded more than $9.6 million to teachers across the state. The Bright Ideas program has reached well over 1.8 million North Carolina students and sponsored more than 9,200 projects in all subjects including math, reading, science and technology, history, music and the arts. Each year, close to 600 grants are also funded across the state.
To find out more information about the Bright Ideas grant program, visit www.ncbrightideas.com. Become a fan of “Bright Ideas Education” on Facebook to receive regularly updated news about the program.
EnergyUnited and North Carolina’s Touchstone Energy is committed to bettering the communities we serve, and we believe there is no better way than through the education of our youth. The Bright Ideas grant program is just another way EnergyUnited is looking out for its members. To find out more information about the Bright Ideas grant program, visit the Bright Ideas website at www.ncbrightideas.com.