University News

Alumni Association Grants Program Announces 2021 Fall Grant Awards

Published: December 21, 2021 | Categories: All News

The Western New England University Alumni Association Grants Program has announced the 2021 fall grant cycle awards, providing nearly $18,000 in funding to impact 13 projects and programs. With the conclusion of the fall grant cycle, the 2021 awards cycles have collectively funded 24 projects with $35,290 in financial support.

The Alumni Association Grants Program offers grants to students, student organizations, and members of the University community who support student programs, student organization initiatives, student athletics, and Alumni Association initiatives. Since launching the program in 2007, the Alumni Association has awarded 395 grants totaling over $568,000. Program grants are distributed twice annually, once in the fall and once in the spring, after thorough review and selection by a committee of appointed members of the Alumni Association leadership. All program funding is generated from the Alumni Association’s Liberty Mutual Group Savings Program and the AmazonSmile Program.

2021 fall cycle grantees include:

BEAR Program
The BEAR (Building Experiences Among Residence) Program received a fall 2021 Alumni Association grant to support the Bear BBQ coming up in April 2022. Throughout the year, the BEAR program offers a series of social and educational events for first-year students to help them navigate their academic and social experiences - laying a foundation for success in their sophomore year. The Bear BBQ creates the opportunity for first-year students and Residence Life staff to come together to celebrate the end of the academic year and set the stage for their sophomore year.

Class of 2022 Council
The Alumni Association awarded $1,800 in funding to the Class of 2022 Council to support their Tie-Dye and Time Capsule Senior Week Program. During this event, participating seniors will tie-dye their Senior Week t-shirts that feature a logo designed by a WNE senior and selected through a Class of 2022 Senior Logo Competition. Participants will also have the opportunity to add digital files and photos to the Class of 2022's electronic time capsule during this celebratory and creative event. The goal of Senior Week as a whole is to provide students with one final week of special programming, events, and activities to bookend their college experience, make meaningful memories with their classmates, and celebrate their achievements.

COE Honors Program
The COE Honors Program received $1,364 in grant funding in the fall 2021 grant cycle to support their Raspberry Pi Club: Computing for Everyone initiative. This program aims to empower students of all backgrounds to explore the computing world through the Raspberry Pi platform. Using the Alumni Association grant funds, the COE Honors Program will launch a Raspberry Pi Club on campus in spring 2022. The ultimate goal of this initiative is to empower students to translate their interest in computing into skills that will be useful in the future of work. All campus community members can participate in this fun and inclusive program.

College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
The College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences received $2,500 in grant funding to support their summer 2022 Golden Bear Summer Camp. The Golden Bear Summer Camp offers high school students the opportunity to explore various science disciplines, new laboratory technologies, the field of occupational therapy, and pharmacy careers through hands-on learning experiences. The camp includes full-day activities provided by more than 20 pharmacy and occupational therapy faculty and staff. This annual summer camp features a variety of activities, including DNA extraction and purification, fluid and gas separation using chromatography, making therapeutic creams with proper compounding techniques, participating in microbiology experiments and demonstrations of laboratory equipment, and more. The 2022 summer camp will be offered both in-person and virtually to create the opportunity for local students and students in other parts of the country to participate in the program.

Student Affairs: Community Standards and Education
The Alumni Association awarded $800 in grant funding to the Division of Student Affairs to support the development of a Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT) on campus. The grant funds will help provide professional training for BIT members through the National Association for Behavioral Intervention and Threat Assessment (NABITA). The training the team receives will help them in their work to ensure WNE is a safe living and learning environment and with their task of educating the campus community regarding safety, identifying warning signs, and creating a culture of caring.

Delbridge Career Center
The Delbridge Career Center received a $500 fall cycle grant to support the Sophomore Career Connections program. Sophomore Career Connections is an annual program that connects participating sophomore students with one or more alumni currently working in fields the students are interested in exploring. In addition, the program provides a series of workshops designed to help students build important professional skills.

Model United Nations
The Model United Nations club received $500 in funding through the fall 2021 grant cycle to support their participation in the spring 2022 Harvard National Model United Nations conference. This conference provides student delegates with the opportunity to work with students from all over the world to create solutions to real-world global issues. Participating in this conference offers Module UN members the opportunity to connect with students from diverse backgrounds while developing skills and expanding their networks.

Rising Business Professionals
The Rising Business Professionals (RBP) Learning Interest Community will utilize $1,500 from fall 2021 grant funding to provide networking opportunities, career exploration, and academic support for First-Year Business Students. Through a Spring Semester Kickoff Reception, End of Year Student and Alumni Networking Event, and bi-weekly programming, the RBP Learning Interest Community hopes to provide an enriching business education for WNE students.

SAE Baja Club
The SAE Baja Club received $2,500 in grant funding from the fall 2021 grant cycle to support their 2021-2022 Golden Bear Racing Season. The grant funds will help make it possible for Western New England University's Baja Club to represent our university in the annual international Baja SAE Engineering Design Competition using a vehicle designed and fabricated by WNE students. In this competition, students are challenged to design and build off-road single-passenger cars that test the rigors of proper engineering practice.

Pharmacy Student Governance Association (PSGA)
The Pharmacy Student Governance Association will use $1,000 in grant funds to host an Outstanding Young Pharmacist Alumni Banquet in spring 2022. The banquet will provide an opportunity for alumni and students to connect while celebrating the success of our College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences alumni. This event will create an opportunity for alumni to re-engage with our Golden Bear Community and for students to meet professionals from their field of study. Five alumni will be given the Outstanding Young Pharmacist Award during the event.

WNE Health and Wellness Center
The Alumni Association awarded $1,500 to the WNE Health and Wellness Center to support their Mental Health & Art Therapy programming. Using this grant, Naarah Macklin will develop an art therapy program to provide a creative outlet and a safe space for students to help address their mental health needs. The program will feature art therapy groups where participating students can attain a better sense of well-being, an improved connection within themselves, and a stronger connection with others.

WNE Success First Program
Success First has received $2,000 in funding through the fall 2021 grant cycle to support their spring 2022 programming. Success First is a year-long program that supports WNE’s first-generation college students as they transition into college life. Through one-on-one meetings with faculty/staff mentors, biweekly/monthly workshops, outings, and an end-of-year celebration that recognizes students for their hard work, Success First helps keep first-generation college students on the path to graduation. They will use the grant funds to provide students with essential support, workshops, and outings.

Women in Business Club
The Women in Business Club received a fall 2021 cycle grant of $1,500 to support their International Women's Day Celebration on March 8, 2022. In collaboration with the Society of Women Engineers and Feminists Unite, the Women in Business Club will utilize the grant funds to celebrate International Women’s Day during an alumni and student networking luncheon and an evening empowerment rally featuring women-own businesses and food trucks.

Members of the University community are encouraged to apply for the Alumni Association Grants Program. The spring grant cycle application will open on January 31, 2022. Visit for more information about the Alumni Association Grants Program, application process, grantees, and more.

To learn more about how you can support the Alumni Association Grants Program, contact Alumni Relations at