Seven undergraduate students in the Opus College of Business presented Gibney Awards for the second year at a luncheon on Feb. 9. This year’s awards were presented to the nonprofit organizations SpareKey, which provides mortgage assistance for Minnesota homeowners with a critically ill or seriously injured child; Children’s Safety Centers, which provides a supervised haven for children and adults during non-custodial parental visitation; The Prop Shop, a nonprofit resale shop in Eden Prairie, which uses its proceeds to help local families in need and advance awareness of poverty existing in all communities; and St. Mark’s School, a K-8 Catholic school located in St. Paul.
Unbeknownst to the luncheon attendees, this year’s board elected to provide one of the winners with an extra award. While all award winners received $5,000, Spare Key received an additional $5,000 in recognition of its unique and important work in the community.
The first Gibney Awards were presented in 2009. The awards are named for Jackie Gibney, who provided $30,000 for a group of undergraduate students to learn more about the joys of philanthropy. At the 2009 luncheon during which the monetary awards were presented to five organizations, Gibney announced that she would provide funding to continue the process during the 2009-10 academic year.
The Gibney Awards are determined by a board of students, selected by Dr. Barbara Gorski, coordinator of BUS200: Business Learning through Service. To be eligible to serve on the board, students must have completed BUS200. The students decide which and how many nonprofit organizations will receive awards and how much each organization will receive.