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Carrollton, GA—Representatives of Carroll Electric Membership Cooperative (EMC) surprised 110 educators in their classroom with Bright Ideas grants the first week of December. Checks were hand-delivered to 43 schools in Carroll, Haralson, Heard, Paulding and Polk counties, totaling $90,609.

Grants of up to $1,000 are made available each year to public school educators teaching students in grades pre-K through 12 who are also served by the cooperative. All classroom subjects are eligible for funding including but not limited to science, technology, engineering, arts, math and social studies.

“Reading through the applications, it’s so obvious the passion these teachers have for what they do,” said Jeffrey Vance, Carroll EMC Foundation Trustee. “The students are lucky to be a part of their classroom and have someone willing to go beyond the expected to make learning fun.”

To be considered for a Bright Ideas grant, teachers must submit an online application outlining, in detail, their classroom project and the expected budget. Projects should be creative and must create an enriching learning environment for students. All applications are judged blindly by the cooperative’s Foundation Trustees when the cycle closes.

“We know teachers have busy schedules,” continued Vance. “Even if it means spending a few minutes on the application over several days, we encourage them to apply. It’s free money that will benefit hundreds of students.”

Bright Ideas grants are funded through the generous donations of Carroll EMC Members who participate in Operation Round Up®, a program where they elect to “round-up” their electric bills to the nearest dollar. The program is governed by the cooperative’s Foundation Trustees and funds a variety of community service projects including Bright Ideas, Impact Grants, student scholarships, and many health and human services programs.

To see a complete list of this year’s Bright Ideas recipients, please visit carrollemc.com/brightideas. Applications for 2023 will be accepted beginning Aug. 15.

Carroll EMC is a Member-owned cooperative providing electricity to approximately 53,000 homes and businesses. The co-op serves Members in Carroll, Haralson, Heard, Paulding, Polk, Floyd and Troup counties. This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer. For more information visit the cooperative’s website at carrollemc.com or follow Carroll EMC on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIn. Carroll EMC: Community Built. Community Builder.

Carroll County/Carrollton City:

  • Tyler Wright at Mt. Zion High School received a Bright Ideas grant for his project “Algebra 2 Podcasting ‘the Math podcast/video’.” Pictured left to right, Carroll EMC Community Relations Supervisor Taylor Key, Principal Landon Odom, Tyler Wright, Assistant Principal Lisa Puckett, and Carroll EMC Foundation Trustee Rick Lovvorn.
  • Carrollton High School’s Laura Rader was one of three at her school to receive a Bright Ideas grant from Carroll EMC for her project “Delta Math Plus—Stream Project.”

Haralson County/Bremen City:

  • Angelica Cowart at Buchanan Primary School submitted her Bright Ideas grant for a project titled “Ears That Can Hear.” She stands with Carroll EMC representatives Ryan Sammon, Jordan Kierbow, Martha Long and Carolyn Bennett and Assistant Principal Ashley Coggins.
  • Kristal Stewart at Bremen Middle School plans to use her Bright Ideas grant for her project “Teachers Need Caffeine.” She stands with Carroll EMC representatives Ryan Sammon, Taylor Key, Martha Long, Carolyn Bennett, Kim Billings and Jordan Kierbow.

Heard County:

  • With her Bright Ideas grant, Lindsay McKenzie will be “Bringing History and Science to Life Through Books” to students at Centralhatchee Elementary School. She stands with Carroll EMC’s Teal Clark and Rolando Benitez.

Paulding County:

  • Tricia Pederson and her students at Paulding County High School will be designing and engineering solar powered outlets for a STEM garden with the funds from her Bright Ideas grant.  

Polk County:

  • Susan Morris was one of two teachers at Van Wert Elementary School to be selected for a Bright Idea grant. Her and her students will be studying marine biology, geology and zoology with the funds received.

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