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Binghamton University philanthropy program awards more than $14,000

By Eric Reinhardt (


Philanthropy students at Binghamton University have awarded more than $14,000 in grants this year. (Photo credit: Binghamton University)

VESTAL, N.Y. — Binghamton University philanthropy students have announced the recipients of over $14,000 in grant awards for 2020.

The school’s philanthropy incubator program — which involves undergraduate and graduate students from two different courses — has awarded nearly $200,000 to Broome County nonprofit organizations since its inception in 2009.

The philanthropy incubator program involves students enrolled in Binghamton University’s College of Community and Public Affairs and across the university who learn about philanthropy’s role in addressing community needs, and how to manage and lead nonprofit organizations effectively.

Undergraduate effort

Undergraduate students in the Philanthropy and Civil Society course are giving away a total of $11,000 this year.

They’ve awarded $8,000 to VINES (Volunteers Improving Neighborhood Environments), a local grassroots organization that seeks to create a “more just and sustainable” community food system.

The grant from the students will enable VINES to purchase a “hoop house” and other equipment that the organization will use to increase the amount of food it produces.

The students also awarded $3,000 to RISE, which assists families that have dealt with or are threatened with domestic violence. The grant will help the organization cover basic operating expenses.

Funding for the undergraduate students comes from the Boston, Massachusetts–based Learning by Giving Foundation, founded by philanthropist Doris Buffett, which has supported student philanthropy at Binghamton University since 2010.

Graduate-student effort

Graduate students in the Issues in Nonprofit Administration course raised over $3,000 for the Rural Health Network, based in Whitney Point, whose mission is to “advance the health and well-being or rural people and communities.”

Even though the graduate students had to cancel the annual event they use to raise their grant funds — the Party with a Purpose — due to the COVID-19 crisis, they were still able to generate financial support for the Rural Health Network from students, university staff, and community leaders.


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