Whitehouse ISD will award up to $50,000 in grant competition

WHITEHOUSE, Texas (KETK) — The White House ISD Education Foundation (WISDEF) is hosting the third annual Wildcat Den on Saturday, April 2 beginning at 9 a.m. in the cafeteria at Whitehouse Junior High School. WISDEF said it will award up to $50,000 in the Shark Tank Style Grant Competition.

Launched in 2020, Wildcat Den extends WISDEF grants beyond written applications that are scored by panels of judges. Wildcat Den applicants will complete an abridged version of the written application, with the bulk of the information shared in a presentation to a panel of Wildcat Den judges. Each candidate or group of candidates will make a six-minute presentation followed by a four-minute question-and-answer session by the jury.

“For the past three years, our donors have generously allowed us to fund $100,000 annually in Whitehouse District initiatives, primarily in the form of grants,” said Kristina Wait, Executive Director of the Whitehouse ISD Education Foundation. “When our funding reached that level of annual giving, we incorporated Wildcat Den. This Shark Tank-style contest allows grant applicants to share a passion and enthusiasm that isn’t always evident in our standard written grant application. Through their presentation, applicants can persuade our panel of judges to fund their scholarship by demonstrating the impact it will have on Whitehouse ISD students.

School officials said an important change between the fall grant cycle and Wildcat Den is that there is no cap on the money requested. Generally, a grant is limited to $2,000 for an individual or $5,000 for a group.

At Wildcat Den, an applicant can request any amount between $2,000 and the full amount available. The only requirement is that the grant aligns with WISDEF’s mission statement for funding creative and imaginative ideas.

“Our fall scholarships allow us to extend our activities to the entire district: almost all campuses and many disciplines receive a maximum of $5,000. This year we have funded up to $50,000 in fall grants. Wildcat Den allows us to delve deeper into a campus or program. Since there is no maximum amount for a grant, we can fund incredibly impactful ideas,” Wait said. “In 2021, we funded a flight simulator for Whitehouse High School. The previous year, we were the first education foundation in the region to fund book vending machines on five of our campuses. Each of these grants has an exciting impact on students. »

Last year, Wildcat Den funded seven unique projects, including You Wanna Build a Robot? Lego! which created a Lego robotics team on each campus, culminating in a competition at Trane Technologies earlier this semester.

Another grant funded was Children Grieve, Too which established support groups for Whitehouse Junior High School students grieving the loss of a loved one. This program was reportedly taught to other district counselors and has since been launched at Whitehouse High School.

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