Amy made the leap to attend the 2017 National GPA Conference in San Diego

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2017 Susan Kemp Memorial Scholarship

by Amy Shankland, GPC

Once upon a time there was a grant professional named Amy who loved her career. She joined the Grant Professionals Association in 2007, became active with her chapter, and attended every national GPA conference starting in 2009. Amy even obtained her GPC in 2010. An unexpected job change in 2015, however, brought a halt to her conference attendance. While she still did some grant work, it wasn’t enough to justify attendance to her employer.

Every day she went to work but missed using her grant skills and experience. Amy also missed her grant professional friends. She made do with the occasional webinar and local GPA meeting, but she knew she was missing out on the big picture for her development.

One day, Amy made the leap to become a full-time grant consultant. She had an amazing client and wanted to become the best possible development director for her organization, the Link Observatory Space Science Institute. She applied for a scholarship from the Grant Professionals Foundation in order to attend the 2017 National GPA Conference in San Diego.

Because of that, Amy received the Susan Kemp Memorial Scholarship and was finally able to return to the conference to get the latest information on trends in her field. She flew to San Diego in November and was thrilled to be reunited with her grant “peeps” from all over the country. Amy enjoyed her morning walks from the Hyatt to the conference hotel, Paradise Point, and loved her first ever visit to San Diego. The perfect weather, sunshine, and beautiful surroundings kept her alert and open to learning, despite the three-hour time difference.

Because of that, Amy attended workshops that gave her valuable information she could use right away for her organization; networked with others who worked in the science field; and gave her own workshop showing attendees that grant professionals really are superheroes! Amy discovered she loved healthy California food, right down to her last bites of quinoa, rice porridge, and steel cut oatmeal.

Finally, she returned to Indiana with incredible enthusiasm and is already implementing what she learned to help Link Observatory Space Science Institute become Indiana’s Space Center. Her bosses were quickly impressed with her new knowledge and expertise.

THANK YOU, Grant Professionals Foundation!

2 Comments on “Amy made the leap to attend the 2017 National GPA Conference in San Diego”

  1. Great story Amy! Congratulations on your new position. Professional groups such as GPA, SRA and NGMA were a major help to me throughout my career.

    Neal Meyerson
    Retired Grants Management Officer
    US Health Resources and Services Administration

  2. Amy, I can’t imagine the GPA without you! It was good to hang with the Central Indiana Chapter in San Diego.

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