Grants Professionals Appreciation Week
Management Concepts is a proud partner of this year’s International Grant Professionals Week. I especially appreciate that the Grant Professionals Association (GPA) recognizes the breadth of professions that our community encompasses.
Last week I had the opportunity to see this diversity during a class visit in DC. Each time I am able to sit in with our students, I come away inspired by their daily work assignments. In this particular class, I met Federal employees in audit, programmatic, investigation, and administrative roles; State and local agency representatives managing all aspects of their grants; and a nonprofit grants specialist dealing with the intricacies of passing through funds to international entities. We were brought together not just because we need to know the Cost Principles detailed at 2 CFR 200, but also by a professional commitment to allocate and administer Federal financial assistance fairly to support our communities.
I continue to be amazed by the number of people who choose to remain within the grants world once they’ve entered. By the researchers and scientists who spend days and weeks away from the lab to write and manage grants and serve on peer review boards. By the first responders who begin second careers as Federal grants analysts, building upon their experiences managing awards at their local department. By the Federal executives who regularly testify on the strengths and weaknesses of Federal financial assistance programs to Congress. And by the founder of the boot-strapped nonprofit that just won their first $20,000 award to address needs in their community.
Part of the reason that so many of us come into grants and end up staying in the field is because these are not easy transactions. There is something satisfying about building a grant program’s funding opportunity so that it is compliant with myriad statutes and the Uniform Guidance, engaging the program managers, administrators, budget officials, and IT specialists along the way. Grants professionals thrive at meeting the challenge of developing successful proposals and achieving a project’s goals and objectives upon award. With successful grant programs, we are able to serve and better our communities and nation.
It’s precisely because of this complexity that we all need to take a day or five away from the churn to keep ourselves up-to-date as grants professionals. It’s also why we develop our annual Federal Grants Update, and constantly review our entire grants curriculum. We recognize that as grants professionals our training time and investment must be worth the time away from the office.
With that in mind, I hope you will take a few moments to tell us about your training plans and needs to keep you up-to-date. Our Grants Professionals Survey is open now through March 25 – we want to hear from you!