In Summary

Students from Swinburne University of Technology will gain real life experience in philanthropy and grant-making by determining how to allocate $10,000 as part of the university’s Master of Social Investment and Philanthropy.

The Experiential Giving Program is funded by the Truby and Florence Williams Charitable Trust, a philanthropic trust managed by Equity Trustees.

Outside of North America, Swinburne is the first university to offer experiential giving.

Swinburne’s Dr Elizabeth Branigan, Senior Lecturer and Program Coordinator said the experience will prepare students to become purposeful givers.

“This is an incredible opportunity for our students to engage with non-profit organisations in their communities and put into practice what they learn throughout the course.”

Students will gain real world experience in:

  • working in project teams to determine the terms of a grant process
  • conducting due diligence and site visits
  • reviewing and assessing applications
  • providing accountable and ethical justification for awarding funds.

Equity Trustees’ General Manager of Philanthropy, Tabitha Lovett, said the trustee company is very pleased to be supporting this opportunity for Masters students to explore the fundamentals of grant-making and social investment.

“We are delighted that through this new program students of philanthropy will be able to experience both the challenge and reward of being involved in intellectually rigorous and thoughtful allocation of philanthropic resources.”

The project is a teaching collaboration between Swinburne and Northeastern University, Boston, USA.

The unit is being delivered in association with Rebecca Riccio from the Social Impact Lab at Northeastern University, who leads a partnership of 35 universities throughout the United States and Canada delivering similar programs under the auspices of the Learning by Giving Foundation. 

The Experiential Giving Program forms part of forms part of Strategic Philanthropy and Grant-making, a 12 week unit that will run in Semester 2, 2015.