Bloomsburg University Foundation Establishes Community Impact Fund

For Immediate Release

Date: June 18, 2020

Contact: Tom McGuire, Director of Communications/Media Relations

Bloomsburg University Foundation Establishes Community Impact Fund

BLOOMSBURG—The Bloomsburg University Foundation recently established a Community Impact Fund to provide funding in support of student professional experience projects. The projects will benefit the Town of Bloomsburg and communities throughout Columbia County with marketing studies for non-profits, special projects for the town, engagements within field of study, and more.

Professional experiences help students apply what they are learning in the classroom, establish a professional network and obtain career experience in a workplace while earning a degree. Faculty mentored research or internships, study abroad, creative performance activities, service projects and attending a professional conference are all considered professional experiences.

“This endowment provides our friends and supporters the unique opportunity to support our students and benefit the community at the same time,” said BU President Bashar W. Hanna. “Through these valuable experiences outside the classroom, our students learn more about themselves and the world, further develop their professional networks and career paths, and gain meaningful work experience.”

To help offset some of the cost of participating in these experiences, Bloomsburg University Foundation offers Professional Experience Grants (PEGs).

PEGs from this fund are to be used exclusively for projects and/or initiatives supporting community needs within the boundaries of Columbia County.

As part of the fund’s establishment, an allocation committee comprised of five representatives – three from Bloomsburg University and the Bloomsburg University Foundation, one from Columbia County, and one from the Town of Bloomsburg has been formed. 

The committee will meet three times a year (two for fall and spring allocations and one for a fund review). Initial work has focused on setting up the process and an online application, with the first funding round application period to be announced and launched in early summer 2020.

Current fund committee members include, Jerome Dvorak, executive director, Bloomsburg University Foundation; Heather Feldhaus, interim associate vice provost for research and sponsored programs, Bloomsburg University; Dan Knorr, director of external and government relations, Bloomsburg University; Bonnie Crawford, Bloomsburg town councilmember; and Chris Young,Columbia County Commissioner.

The first application period for funding consideration will open June 22, 2020 and close July 31, 2020.  Applicants may be internal to Bloomsburg University – students, faculty, and staff – or may be external organizations, non-profits, and businesses. 

Professional experience projects for this round of funding are envisioned to be completed within the fall 2020 academic semester. A prepared or existing collaboration between Bloomsburg University students/faculty and a community sponsor is encouraged but not required. Applications are available online at

Bloomsburg University is one of 14 universities in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. The university serves approximately 8,200 students, offering comprehensive programs of study in five distinct colleges: College of Education, Zeigler College of Business, College of Liberal Arts, College of Science and Technology, and Honors College.