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Opportunities For Alumni

The TOP Alumni are the educators that have and continue to sustain the program for over 20 years. We seek to support TOP Alumni in their continued pursuit to educate about contemporary Germany as workshop leaders, lesson authors, and as creative project leaders in their school, district, and community.


In the spirit of celebrating 20 years of teaching contemporary Germany and global competency in North American classrooms, TOP wants to include its over 1,700 study tour Alumni in its anniversary celebrations.

The purpose of this Mini-Grant is to give TOP Alumni and their students the opportunity to propose ideas about how they could celebrate 20 years of TOP. Alumni may propose their own idea or work with a class, after school club, or even organize a school-wide project.

Ideas include but are not limited to:
  • Working with a podcast journalist to tell their “TOP story” and what working with the program has meant to them and their teaching career.
  • Ideas for unique professional development workshop events.
  • Blogging about/writing about the significance of their experience with TOP, perhaps using Flipgrid or other platforms.
  • Sharing students’ perspectives about Germany, perhaps using Flipgrid or other platforms.
  • Sharing unique lessons students have learned about Germany, from the students’ perspectives.
  • Taking over the TOP social media accounts to offer unique perspective.
  • Starting a “German” initiative at your school, such as the “Schultüten” or a “A School without Racism. A School with Courage.”
  • Technology grants for transatlantic sustainability projects.
Mini-Grants are available to all TOP Alumni (past Fellows), including registered and committed 2021 virtual study tour participants, and can be used to support a class, after school club, or school project at any grade level.
Mini-Grants are typically available in the amount of $500 - $2,500 and will be awarded after approval of a project proposal. Higher amounts may be considered based on proposal merit. Your proposal should include a detailed budget for the project, with the proposed total project cost falling anywhere within the available range. Funding could be used, for example, to pay for project-specific supplies, local student transportation, classroom equipment for online exchanges, newspaper subscriptions, etc. All requests for funding must be directly related to what you need to carry out the proposed project with your students. We will not fund: teacher travel without students; basic school supplies such as paper or pencils; food/beverage costs, etc.
Proposals should be approximately 2-3 pages in length and provide a title and detailed description of the project, its objectives, activities, learning outcomes, and timeline. Proposals should also include a detailed project budget.

All proposals should be submitted as an email attachment to,

Proposals will be accepted on a rolling basis. Projects should be completed within the same calendar year in which the grant is distributed.


Since 2005, TOP has annually presented its “TOP Fellow of the Year” award to the one educator from its entire Alumni Network who satisfies the following criteria:

  • Quality and quantity of in-service training workshops led,
  • Quality of written unit(s) of learning,
  • Personal qualities, such as enthusiasm for teaching about contemporary Germany, leadership displayed during and after the study tour, and a desire to collaborate with other educators to strengthen German-North American relations in the classroom, school, district, and beyond.


  • G. Dale Greenawald (Boulder, CO), 2005
  • Henry Rehn (Sterling Heights, MI), 2006
  • Linda Cotter (Columbus, OH), 2007
  • Daniel W. Dunne (Rochester, NY), 2008
  • Scott Noet (Faribault, MN), 2009
  • Paul Dickler (Dodgeville, WI), 2010
  • James Feldman (St. Clair Shores, MI), 2011
  • Mary T. McCullagh (Plantation, FL), 2012
  • Thomas Bittner (Hamburg, NY), 2013
  • Constance Manter (East Boothbay, ME), 2014
  • Michael Raymer (Peachtree City, GA), 2015
  • Jacqueline Littlefield (Saco, ME), 2016
  • Nate Larsen (Fremont, NE), 2017
  • Ellen Resnek (Exton, PA), 2018
  • Amy Perkins (Saint Joseph, MI), 2019