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2017 BVF Grant Awardees
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The judging panel selected the following submissions for funding:

  • Butler University (Indianapolis): “Making Online Math Courses Accessible for Students with Visual Impairments”

The $20,000 award will fund research, development, testing, and evaluation of the ability of various software applications to convert mathematical expressions (equations, graphs, charts and diagrams) into accessible, readable expressions for students with visual impairments (SVIs) enrolled in online courses.  Upon completion of the project, Butler students and staff will convert existing course content with inaccessible mathematical expressions to accessible ones for students with disabilities and share their work with other colleges.    

  • Franklin College (Franklin): “FC-AHCT: The Franklin College Allied HealthCare Team, a Franklin College and Compass Park Collaboration”

Franklin’s $20,000 grant will establish a direct patient care partnership with senior living community Compass Park, marking the first of its kind between an Indiana private institution offering four-year, pre-professional academic programs and a healthcare provider to address the critical issues of talent recruitment and retention.  As part of the program, 14 Franklin students will be certified as CNAs and employed at Compass Park, and the college will develop its first-ever accredited health sciences co-op course as part of the curriculum.

  • Marian University (Indianapolis): “University Without Borders Program”

Marian University’s Educators College will use its $18,000 grant to collaborate with local organizations like the Immigrant Welcome Center and the Archdiocese of Indianapolis to provide English language and literacy training to immigrants, refugees, and other newcomers to the community, as well as to offer cultural competency workshops and training for students on how to work with diverse populations.  This partnership will prepare students to work with individuals from different parts of the world, provide them with more teacher training opportunities, and allow them to give of themselves for the common good.

  • Oakland City University (Oakland City): “The Crime Scene House: The Application of an Active Learning Environment in Criminal Justice”

Oakland City’s $17,000 award will be used to establish a mock crime scene facility.  Students and law enforcement officers using the house will be able to hone their forensic investigative techniques as they delve into finding and recording evidence from the latest crime.  The facility will also be used by high school and middle school youth participating in the university’s Career and Directions program and its new Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) summer camp program.


  • Ancilla College (Donaldson): “The Ancilla College Asperger’s Program: Enhancing the Learning Environment”

Ancilla’s $20,200 award will provide a web-based resource at the school and the other 30 ICI members to serve high functioning students with Autism Spectrum Disorder, specifically Asperger’s. The program will train Ancilla faculty and staff and a representative from other schools to enhance social interaction in the residential life and in the classroom.


  • Indiana Wesleyan University (Marion): “Growing Resilience: Creating Trauma-Informed Space in our Community”

IWU will foster a partnership between the university and the Brain Kitchen, a local non-profit that is a community kitchen with a homework space serving 800 low-income children. The $17,400 award will train volunteers, create space designed specifically for the Brain Kitchen and provide activities, such as physical movement or art to try to benefit the students.


  • Taylor University (Upland): “ESL Tutoring Center for Adults and Their Young Children”

Taylor’s $17,400 will help move a pilot program into full fruition, funding free one-on-one ESL instruction. The program will benefit immigrant parents and their children through education, as well as Taylor students who will practice and develop professional and intercultural skills.


  • University of Evansville (Evansville): “Changemaker Incubator ”

UE’s $20,000 will build a space within the library to support social entrepreneurs and their enterprise start-ups, so they can exchange ideas, collaborate or pitch concepts to investors. The incubator will host Monthly Changemaker Community Sessions and a Changemaker Training Series fro the public.