History Teaching Alliance Wins Humanities Challenge Grant
The History Teaching Alliance has been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant of $225,000. Only forty-one Challenge Grants were awarded nationally by the NEH in this past grants competition. As part of the requirements of the grant, the History Teaching Alliance will be required to raise an additional $675,000 in the next four years from non-federal donors. Competition for these grants was heavier than in past years and the review process was rigorous.
The NEH Challenge Grant constitutes a significant endorsement of the HTA and its programs of teaching collaboratives that work to improve history education through the development of networks between university and precollegiate teachers. A joint program of the AHA, OAH, and the National Council for the Social Studies, the Alliance is also one of eight programs sponsored by the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. The University of Florida, Gainesville and several major foundations have also extended considerable support.
Since its inception in 1985, more than 1,000 precollegiate teachers have participated in sixty-three HTA projects in twenty-two states. HTA projects have included such topics as constitutional history, labor and women's history, and African history. Eight new projects were established for this past summer in the history of science, local history, Japanese history, history of dissent, and the history of religion.
The continuing goal of the HTA is to build its network of teaching collaboratives and to expand into new areas. Future plans include an emphasis on minority participation and reaching beyond the suburbs to rural and inner-city communities where possibilities for teacher development may be limited. In order to address these needs and meet the NEH challenge, the HTA has initiated a three-tier fund-raising campaign with the immediate task of building the HTA's endowment. Interest on gifts to the endowment can be targeted to the support of specific local projects at the donor's request. The HTA will continue to assist current projects in local fundraising efforts and seek regrant funds to develop new projects. Historians who are interested in donating to the HTA or who wish to offer assistance please either contact Jane Landers, Director, HTA, Department of History, 4131 Turlington Hall, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611 or mark your donation, "In support of National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant proposal # CX-20067-90."
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