We have an exciting new development—the rebirth of the BEA Research Grants and how YOU can help make these grants a reality. To make these grants a permanent part of BEA, Past-President Augie Grant has laid the groundwork and helped lead the effort for us to raise enough money to make these grants a permanent part of BEA. When he told me that he and his wife, Diane, were willing to provide half of the funding to create an endowment, I was as excited as I was astounded.
My request to you is that you read his story. After that, please consider making a donation to help BEA reach our goal. We have already raised more than $158,000 of the $200,000 goal to kick off this endowment. At roughly 1,000 members, you can do the math and see we can do this. But that’s why we need everyone to help reach the goal so we can start awarding the grants to those of you who need them.
BEA’s strength has always been reflected in how it meets the needs of its members. Many of our members—especially our junior faculty and grad students—need grant funds to support their research. So, anything given now will benefit those who need grant funds to conduct their research. Please continue reading Augie’s story; I think you’ll do the same thing I did and make a contribution to the BEA Research Grant endowment.
Message from Augie Grant
I’m living a dream, and I need your help to make it continue. Many years ago, as an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas, when I needed money to fund a survey research project, I applied for and received an NAB Research Grant through BEA to fund the project. I’ve never forgotten the difference that grant made in both helping me do research and raising the profile of my T&P file. Over the years since then, I saw many of my BEA colleagues get these grants and build on the research they conducted to enjoy highly successful careers. Fast forward to the 21st century; Although the money for those grants dried up, the need only increased. That’s when I decided I wanted to bring back those grants as BEA Research Grants. And, instead of having to look for money every year, I wanted to raise enough for an endowment that would ensure that BEA could give these grants every year from now on. I created a plan to solicit funding from big media companies and BEA partners to fund the new endowment, and then the pandemic hit. I knew BEA would need at least $200,000 to start the endowment, and I had no clue about how to raise the money during a pandemic. Media were hit especially hard. One night I was looking at one of the rarities in my bourbon collection, thinking I would never be able to open a bottle of bourbon that was worth so much (yes, good bourbon increases in value over time, and I’ve been collecting for many years!), and I realized that the bourbon collection could jump-start the endowment. To end this long story, I sold the most valuable bourbons in my collection and Diane and I followed it up with additional cash to ensure that the BEA Research Grant program could start as soon as possible. I’ve always believed that you should not ask anyone to support any cause that you don’t personally support, so we donated $100,000 to start the grant. BEA also kicked in $50,000 from long-term reserves to support the endowment, leaving us three-quarters of the way toward our goal.
That’s where you come in. We are counting on BEA members to help us raise the remaining $50,000 so we can start making awards. If you love research, or if you have ever received a research grant from BEA, or if you want to make BEA strong, I hope that you will make a contribution to the BEA Research Grant endowment. All of the money donated is a tax-deductible contribution that will become a permanent part of the BEA endowments, making the entire organization stronger. Since we started letting people know about the project in December, we have received more than $8,000 contributions, with even more pledged to help us reach our goal. I’m very grateful to the six deep pocket contributors who have given or pledged $1000 each, but I am just as grateful to the members who have given what they can to help us reach this goal.
So, here’s the pitch: If you want to help BEA’s effort to start awarding research grants, I would appreciate your donation. There are two easy ways to contribute:
If you want to make the contribution now, you have two options:
- You can mail a check:
Broadcast Education Association
1 M Street, SE
Washington, DC 20003
- You can go online and give with a credit card:
And if you want to make a pledge for a future contribution, just send me an email with the information—I’ll make sure to add you to the list of supporters of the BEA Research Grant, and we’ll give you a reminder when you’re ready. Thank you in advance for your support! Augie
The Next Steps: How to Get a BEA Research Grant
Once there are sufficient earnings from the endowment, BEA plans to start awarding the BEA Research Grants to fund the direct costs of research related to any area of broadcasting and electronic media. The number of grants to be awarded every year will depend upon how much return we get from the endowment. Based on the current earnings, we expect to award three to five grants of up to $2000 each (with the number and/or amount of the grants increasing as the endowment grows). BEA will share information on how to apply for grants in Fall 2021, and we hope to make the first awards in Spring 2022. We will also reserve a session at the BEA Annual Convention for presentation of research funded by these grants beginning in 2023. If you have suggestions on the application or review process (or any other aspect of the grants), please send them to BEA Research Grant Committee Chair Augie Grant: .