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Homework pays off for public administration students

Mar 17, 2009
by Liz Daube, '05

A grant writing class helped them bring almost $1 million to St. Johns County Flagler College public administration students recently brought nearly $1 million in funding to St. Augustine public safety initiatives – just by doing their homework.

When St. Johns County Sheriff Deputy Ricky Domingo and 911 Emergency Systems Engineer Michael Banks submitted proposals for a grant writing class, they got what they asked for. Banks received $850,000 in grant money from the State of Florida for a new 911 emergency communication system for St. Johns County. Domingo landed a $1,000 grant from Wal-Mart to purchase seven tracking bracelets for the Sheriff’s Department.

“It’s a win-win for everybody because the county doesn’t have to go and spend those monies,” Banks said. “And we get additional equipment that is critical for us to maintain the infrastructure.”

The tracking bracelets Domingo secured are designed to locate children with mental disabilities or Alzheimer’s patients who might endanger their own lives by wandering away. The tracking system has already helped one local family find their lost son.

Launched in 2003, Flagler’s public administration program is designed specifically for nontraditional-aged students. Many of them already work as law enforcement officers or firefighters.

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