THE ITHACAN

Accuracy • Independence • Integrity
The Student News Site of Ithaca College

THE ITHACAN

The Student News Site of Ithaca College

THE ITHACAN

Support Us
$1375
$2000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support The Ithacan's student journalists in their effort to keep the Ithaca College and wider Ithaca community informed. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

Support Us
$1375
$2000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support The Ithacan's student journalists in their effort to keep the Ithaca College and wider Ithaca community informed. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

BOLD Program returns to IC from year-long hiatus with reshaped focus

The+Helen+Gurley+Brown+Foundation+has+resumed+funding+the+scholarship+at+Ithaca+College.+The+college+worked+with+the+foundation+and+made+a+decision+together+to+pause+selecting+a+cohort+for+last+year+because+the+college+needed+to+adjust+the+proposal+to+match+the+new+purpose.
Malik Clement
The Helen Gurley Brown Foundation has resumed funding the scholarship at Ithaca College. The college worked with the foundation and made a decision together to pause selecting a cohort for last year because the college needed to adjust the proposal to match the new purpose.

With the return of funding, the BOLD Women’s Leadership Network at Ithaca College will welcome a new cohort of BOLD Scholars for the Class of 2027. 

The Helen Gurley Brown Foundation has resumed funding the scholarship at Ithaca College, according to a Feb. 27 email from Bonnie Prunty, vice president of Student Affairs and Campus Life. The foundation funds BOLD Scholarships at other colleges, including the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Connecticut; Colby-Sawyer College in New London, New Hampshire; and Rutgers University-Newark in Newark, New Jersey.

Mish Lenhart, director of the Office of Student Engagement, is the Women’s Leadership Network and the BOLD Program’s director. She said funding paused last year as the college and the foundation worked to redirect the focus of the program.

“We had to make a difficult decision to not have the program last year after some funding was taken from the foundation,” Lenhart said. “They’re reorganizing their portfolio, and we are really excited that we were able to apply for and get a new grant this year.”

Lenhart said the purpose of the program has shifted as the foundation’s mission has evolved. While the program started off with a social justice focus, it is now focused on career development and leadership.

Prunty said the college worked with the foundation and made a decision together to pause selecting a cohort for last year because the college needed to adjust the proposal to match the new purpose.

“We have added some pieces to the new grant proposal for this cycle that specifically focus time and intention for the scholars to all develop strong skill sets in [career development],” Prunty said.

Prunty said the college receives multi-year grants from the foundation. The current grant will be for three years, and she said that after the grant term is up, the college will have to reapply. The grant is used to fund scholarships of up to $21,500 per BOLD Scholar per year to use toward the cost of attendance at the college, with up to 10 scholars in each cohort.

Lenhart said the college uses its grant application to show the foundation how the scholarship will help the next generation of leaders. 

“It’s a pretty thorough look at what we’re going to offer,” Lenhart said. “And the idea is to look at people who maybe didn’t have some of the advantages that other students may have had when they were growing up, trying to make the program as diverse as possible.”

Prunty said the application process is intended to attract diverse applicants. In addition to advertising through Intercom, the program reached out to offices that work with students of marginalized identities.

“We make sure that those offices are aware that the application process is coming and what the program is,” Prunty said. “They can help us amplify the message to those students so that we can have [a] diverse applicant pool.”

Prunty said that to support the leadership focus of the program, each cohort will participate in networking opportunities, a reading group — a text or series of articles discussing leadership — and workshops, like emotional intelligence at work, writing professional communication and goal-setting. She said the scholars will also create leadership development portfolios to exhibit their experiences in the program. Cohorts also decide on a transformation project, which is a chance for scholars to work together to practice leading an initiative that will leave a positive impact on the campus community.

“They will identify somebody who will serve as a mentor for them in their chosen field of study, as well as somebody on campus who might be able to serve as a mentor for them, as well,” Prunty said.

Senior Kiara Valera, a BOLD scholar, said the BOLD scholarship significantly improved her ability to afford the college’s cost of attendance.

“Truthfully, I would not be here at this college if it wasn’t for this program,” Valera said. “It’s brought a lot of happiness to my heart knowing that what it did for me, it’s going to do for a whole bunch of other people as well.”

Valera said part of her experience as a BOLD Scholar has been her cohort’s transformation project. She said the Class of 2024 cohort’s project is a cycle of collecting textbooks and loaning them to students for however long they need before returning them for more students to use. This would help alleviate the financial burden of course materials for students who cannot afford them. 

Valera said current BOLD scholars have been invited to be a part of the application process for the next cohort. She said she participated in a March 19 Q&A session for prospective applicants and current scholars have been invited to ask questions at the interview sessions.

“I was sad at first when I heard that there was going to be that gap in time where we didn’t have that one cohort because the Bold Scholarship for me has helped me tremendously,” Valera said. “I’m really excited to see the next set of scholars come in.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to THE ITHACAN
$1375
$2000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support The Ithacan's student journalists in their effort to keep the Ithaca College and wider Ithaca community informed. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributors
Noa Ran-Ressler, Staff writer
Malik Clement, Managing Editor
Donate to THE ITHACAN
$1375
$2000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Ithacan Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *