Tera Pierce was inspired to apply for the grant writer position in Bullitt County Public Schools because of the district’s unwavering commitment to seeing every child succeed, even if that means trying new ideas and practices.
“I am excited to grow professionally and develop my skills in a new environment, especially one that is quite different from my previous experience,” she said.
That previous experience was Assistant Manager of Institutional Giving at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. Although Pierce enjoyed her work, she yearned a return home to her native Kentucky and write successful funding proposals that benefit local schools.
“Grant awards have the power to positively impact a number of students, and I am eager to be a small piece of that puzzle,” she said. “I have always had a passion for children and education (I was originally planning to become a music teacher), so I am delighted that I can still serve students in this way.”
She will work tirelessly to secure new funding opportunities for the district by next school year. In the long term, Pierce said she looks forward to examining and strengthening the school system’s relationship with local businesses and foundations, as well as expanding national awards.
Pierce applauded the district for realizing and acting upon the importance of grant funding.
“It is crucial for public school systems to invest in grant writing and private funding opportunities,” she said. “As the need for education resources continues to rapidly increase across our state and nation, the number of school districts reliant on external gifts and grants is also rising. In such a progressively competitive market, the importance of quality grant writing is paramount.”
Earning grants means convincing funding agencies that an applicant is both eligible and deserving of the investment through a comprehension application process.
“Grant writing can definitely be a challenging task, especially when a grant application is not selected for an award,” Pierce said. “I do not see such instances as a failure, however, because it creates the perfect opportunity to learn and improve for future submissions. In education specifically, many different curriculum areas and programs can benefit from grant monies. While it may not be possible to win every funding proposal, it is certainly best to try!”
Pierce said the most rewarding part of grant writing is seeing the funded programs come to life, “Especially when it would not have been possible prior to receiving a grant award. Nothing is quite as fulfilling as seeing students benefit from new opportunities!”
Above all, she is ecstatic to be back in her favorite city, Louisville, and love experiencing all that it has to offer (especially when it involves Graeter’s Ice Cream).
Pierce graduated from Pendleton County Schools in northern Kentucky. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Louisville where she worked as Director of Programming and Student Orientation Staffer. She has also served a Newsroom and Sales and Marketing Intern for WLKY-32 in Louisville and Development Assistant at The Kentucky Opera.