Sociology class at Brown has teams of students give away $15,000 dollars

I’m guessing that it is a pretty unique sociology course at Brown that has students work in teams to give away $15,000:

Receiving $15,000 for a college class might sound like a laughable dream, but in SOC 1870A: “Investing in Social Change,” a course offered by the Department of Sociology in conjunction with the Swearer Center for Public Service, that is exactly what happens. There is, of course, a catch — students do not keep the $15,000, but instead work in teams of five to award the money in grants to one or more community organizations.

After reading about a philanthropy-based class at another school, Martin Granoff P’93 approached the Office of the Dean of the College about funding a similar class at the University. They brought the idea to Roger Nozaki MAT’89, director of the Swearer Center for Public Service and associate dean of the College for community and global engagement, who then approached Associate Professor of Sociology Ann Dill about co-teaching the class…

This past year there were 34 applicants for the 18 spots.

In addition to assigned readings, the class also features a number of speakers, a majority of whom are Brown alums who work for Rhode Island or Providence nonprofits.

Obviously, it takes a good amount of money to make a course like this happen but it sounds like an exciting opportunity.

I wonder if a class like this is best-suited for a wealthy school like Brown where students could easily end up in positions to give away corporate, government, or private money or for less-advantaged schools where being able to give away this amount would put students in a more unusual position.

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