Ants Movin’ Rubber Tree Plants

January 30, 2015

After a super-complex, top secret selection process, Riley Fickett has been chosen to receive the inaugural SA Professional Development Award! (Yeah, I agree. It needs a catchier name.)

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Riley is a second-year graduate student in Bridgewater State University’s M.Ed. in Student Affairs Counseling program. She is Graduate Assistant in BSU’s Office of Student Involvement and Leadership, a Graduate Intern in Clark University’s Office of Student Leadership and Programming, and a Resident Director at Dean College. After graduation in May 2015, Riley hopes to begin a career in Campus Activities with a focus on Student Organizations and Leadership Programs. Riley plans on using this award to attend a national conference this spring (details forthcoming).

Riley will be updating us on her professional development experience via this blog. She will share what she learned and she will continue the crowd-funding project next year.

I plan to share the behind-the-scenes process with you, but I’ll save that post for another time. So many thoughtful and talented folks donated to the cause and I am so, so grateful. I wish we could give a prodev award to all of our nominees, but I am pumped that we are able to gift $535 to Riley’s professional development fund! Special thanks and praise to the following donors, y’all are the wind beneath my wings!

Kristen Abell Amma Marfo
Naseeb Bhangal Suzanne McGillicuddy
Jessica Carroll Gary Alan Miller
Sue Caulfield Jason Meier
Martha Compton Carlos Northern
Liz Conley Hector Solis-Ortiz
Chris Conzen Tim St. John
Becca Fick Anne Sweet
Kevin Forch Natalie Undis
Kayla Harvey Marci Walton
Val Heruska Alex Williams
Karen Jones Melissa Williams
Mika Karikari Sarah Wilson Merriman

Taking a Chance on Pro Development

December 29, 2014

UPDATE: We did it! As of January 9, 2015 we raised 105% of our goal and one of the nominees will benefit from your generosity.

A beneficiary will be chosen by the end of January, but in the meantime, I’m going to keep the donation page open to sweeten the pot. So now is the time to squeeze in your nomination!

Overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you who supported this idea. <3 Mal

I’ll begin by saying THANK YOU, because I already know that you’re up for a good challenge. I am raising money to gift $500 of prodev money for student affairs professionals. My ultimate goal is to send someone from our field to a conference of their choice.  It’s easy, here’s how it works:

  1. Head on over to the crowd funding website.
  2. Make a donation on your own behalf or a friend’s. The more you donate, the better chance we have of reaching the goal and giving a gift.
  3. Once the pot reaches $500, we’ll gift a professional development award to a pro who needs it!

So let’s break down that math. If 50 people donate $10 or if 25 people donate $20, we will have reached the goal. Pretty cool right?

Money has been tight when seeking my own professional development opportunities. I know what it’s like to hang back at the office while your colleagues are soaking up knowledge at conferences across the country. I don’t have a lot of money, but I have YOU – and together we can invest in someone who wants to learn. And that someone can be you. Thanks y’all – you are truly the best.

[FAQs are below. Please note minor changes to assure compliance with the terms of service.]

Fundraising Websites – Crowdrise


Q: If I receive the gift, for which expenses can I use the money?
A: Funds can be used for conference registration, travel, or lodging.

Q: Who is eligible?
A: Student affairs graduate students; new, mid-level, and senior-level professionals are all eligible to participate.

Q: If I’m selected to receive the money, what are my responsibilities?
A: 1) Register for a professional development opportunity within 3-months of being selected (and provide proof); 2) Attend the conference or institute (and learn a ton!); 3) Write a guest blog post about what you learned and how it will help you reach your professional goals; 4) Pay it forward. The beneficiary will assume responsibility for continuing the project in 2016.

Q: What if we don’t reach our fundraising goal?
A: First of all, we will did. But worst best case scenario? We keep raising money and give away either one really big award or two $500 ones.

Q:Is the organizer eligible?
A: No, that wouldn’t be fair. You will, however, see my name on the donor list.

Q: What if I have more questions?
A: Email me.