Clickstop Building Construction Update

Clickstop Building Construction Update

We are getting SO CLOSE to being completed with our building expansion.

So close!

But no matter how close it is, there is still a lot of work that is happening right now. We can hear the construction throughout the building, smell the sometimes not so pleasant smells, and see changes happening every day. Dare I say the count down has begun? Maybe not quite yet, but I can barely contain my excitement. So let’s dive right in and show you some of the most recent changes!

 

The kitchen construction is really coming together!

The kitchen with a full service counter.

The kitchen wall has opened up to the bistro.

As you can see, the equipment is almost completely installed in the kitchen. Chef Zach is truly counting down the days to occupancy.  On the left is the salad and soup bar, the right is the full service line, and if we were to do a 180, you would see the beverage bar, and a (healthy) dessert bar. This space will lead out to the grand room, or if you went through the brand new opening (that area in the center that is in plastic) you will be in our current bistro.

Right now, the space smells dusty and drywally (is that even a word?) but soon we will be smelling hot soups, freshly grilled lunches, healthy sides.

 

The Pub is taking shape!

This is looking so cool! At the end of our grand room, there will be a pub! If you look carefully, you can see where the booths will be going in along the back wall of the space. There will be windows all around, and a really dark, moody, atmosphere within. This will be a great space for socializing, eating lunch, or even to have team meetings. This is a really unique feature of the building we are excited about.

You will also notice some stairs in the upper left hand corner of the photos, outside of the pub walls. The construction on the stairs started last week. This is our second set of stairs leading to the second floor. There is also an elevator that was installed as well.

 

The Grand Room stage is almost complete!

This is looking so cool, and is one of the things that I get excited to see finishing touches happen on during construction. As you can see, we have this cool wood plank around the TV wall on the stage. That wood has been tied into the steps leading up to the stage, the outside of the sky box, and the railing along the second floor.

With that big wall of tvs, and the audio being wired throughout, employees will be able to sit upstairs or down on the main floor during meetings.

There will be a lot of natural lighting throughout the building.

As you can see, the natural lighting really brightens up the space, even in the areas with darker walls. In the left hand picture, you can see the side of the sky box on the left. The right hand picture shows the hall to the locker rooms, therapy room, game room, laundry room, and the new Technology space. Outside of the photo frame to the right, is the atrium, which also lets in a ton of light.

 

Did someone say Therapy room? I thought this was a top workplace?!

The therapy room has a nice calming grey color to help relax employees.

The therapy room has a nice calming grey color to help relax employees.

Yep! You heard right, a therapy room! But this therapy room is going to be mainly used for massages! Every month Clickstop has a massage therapist on site so employees can purchase 15 or 30 minute massages. Nothing says relax and be happy like this in the middle of the day! We currently have to do these in a conference room, which is in a high traffic area. Not that relaxing! This space will be perfect for those moments of deep relaxation. Additionally, it will double as a room that we can do wellness exams or weigh ins during our thrive competitions!

 

Speaking of wellness, the gym floor is being installed!

The last time you saw the gym, it was a bit of a mess. Well look at it now! The gym floor is being installed and soon it will be in its final stages of completion! Although we really appreciate that we have had a small workout facility the past five years at Clickstop, we are anxiously awaiting this larger, ventilated, and non-carpeted area to work out in. We LOVE that Clickstop looks out for our physical well-being!

 

Holy Smokes! THAT is what we call a patio!

The giant patio has been poured.

The GIANT patio has been poured. Now we just need grass instead of all that mud!

Looking out the gym windows, you will notice a LOT of mud. But look closer, there is a slab of cement out there! That is our new patio! Wait. Strike that. This is our new MASSIVE patio! I can already see employees enjoying their lunch outside, competing in wellness activities, playing bags, and even shooting some hoops. Who knows exactly how we will utilize this space, but the options are endless!

So there you have it, a quick look at our construction progress. Make sure to check back in the next few weeks to see even more finishing touches!

Join Clickstop Employees in the Fight Against Diabetes!

Join Clickstop Employees in the Fight Against Diabetes!

One of the most amazing things about Clickstop employees is their unwavering commitment to help a good cause. Whether it is buying Christmas gifts for a family in need, supporting the graduates who have achieved so much despite obstacles in their way, cleaning up the ditches in the spring and fall to beautify our little corner of the world, or coming together to show a fellow employee that they matter. Clickstop employees are the BEST. If you have not visited our company and experienced it first hand, you are missing out because it is truly amazing what we can do together.

Yesterday was a prime example of Clickstop employees stepping up to support a good cause.

Diabetes Fact Sheet

Earlier this year, Joe and I (this is Amy, btw) decided to form a Clickstop team for the Tour De Cure, hosted by the American Diabetes Association. Their mission, to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all those with diabetes.  So, in order to raise money to help find a cure, the Tour De Cure was formed. People across the United States can sign up to ride their bicycle, raising money for the cause. Diabetes affects the lives of millions of people. So if Joe and I are able to ride our bikes and raise money for a good cause, we are in.

So we formed a team and decided to throw a spaghetti lunch and bake sale.

(yes, we know… bake sale and diabetes do not really go well together.)

All Clickstop employees were able to have a plate of spaghetti, salad with all the fixings, and a slice of garlic bread for $6.00. Baked goods were up for grabs for $2.00 a piece. Joe made some wonderful crunchy cookie bars, I made my famous lemon cupcakes and some Special K bars, and Lacy donated a chocolate cake with some amazing vanilla frosting. (It is a secret family recipe). We also had some items up for grabs in a silent auction.

Remember when I said that Clickstop employees always step up?

THEY STEPPED UP. The support we felt was amazing. The bistro was full the entire lunch hour with employees enjoying their spaghetti and salad. The baked goods quickly sold out, and we had some nice bids on the silent auction items. We had employees donate their time (Lacy with the wonderful cake and Debbie helped Joe and I prepare the meal. THANKS!) and we even had some much appreciated free will donations. A few employees brought in their family members to enjoy the food and company of this incredible team.

All together, we made $603.01!

Seriously…

WOW! We are so excited.

So now, on June 24, Joe and I are going to gear up and ride the 50 mile route in the Tour De Cure. That gives us plenty of time to practice. And with the support we feel from our coworkers and friends, 50 miles is going to be a walk in the park.

And we want YOU to join our team!

Our team is supporting the American Diabetes Association because we want to make a difference. We want to lead. We want to inspire. We want to empower! We want everyone to have what we get in our lives everyday. The ability to Make Time for Fun and Family. The ability and support to Promote a Winning Team Spirit. We want you to feel Greatness in Yourself, and Inspire it in Others. And most of all, we are motivated to Think Big and Make it Happen. Join our team, meet some great people on the ride, and have some serious fun.

Join our biking team or donate to the cause here. 

Find out a little bit more about Joe and me below!

How long have you been into biking?

My dad was into biking for a long time while I was growing up. I never really got into it until after I graduated college. But once I started getting serious about biking, I was hooked! It has been about 10 years since I started biking seriously, and hope to do it for the rest of my life. – Joe

Around 10 years ago RAGBRAI came through my hometown. I remember driving around with my mom and dad to check things out and I told my dad that I would love to do that some time. Dad was excited, mom thought we were nuts. The next year he bought a bike and started riding. I wasn’t working for a company that gave me much vacation time so I couldn’t join him right away, but six years ago (almost exactly a month before I started at Clickstop) I rode in my first RAGBRAI and have been riding ever since. I get to hang out with my dad and two brothers a lot during the biking season. We all love it. – Amy

What types of rides do you usually participate in?

We haven’t participated in many rides since my brother and I started having kids, but we have participated in TOMRV (Tour of the Mississippi River Valley) which is a two day back to back century ride, traveling from Davenport to Dubuque on day one, then back the next. We have also ridden RAGBRAI several times in the past, but I have not been in a couple years. I am looking forward to getting back into it! -Joe

This year will be my 6th RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa). I LOVE it so much. There is nothing like getting up at 5am and hoping on your bike and enjoying Iowa. Plus, It is usually the hottest week of the year and I love the hot weather.  I also usually ride in RASH ride, which is a 50 mile bike ride around Buchanan County. My dad and I have ridden the Lake to Lake ride a few times and the Sturgis Falls ride as well. And of course, just riding all weekend long and after work too. -Amy

Why did you decide to be a part of the Clickstop team for the Tour De Cure?

I have been wanting to get back into organized rides and this was a great opportunity for that, while supporting a great cause. My grandmother lived with diabetes for many years before she passed away, and after watching her struggle with the disease, I thought it would be a great legacy for her to participate in an event that raises money to combat the disease. – Joe

Last year my dad, mom, aunt, and I went to Texas so my dad and I could participate in the BP MS 150 – a bike ride that raised money for MS. It felt good to ride for a cause. We had a great time with family, but it made me really appreciate the exciting and incredibly friendly rides right here in Iowa. So when this ride came up, I decided to go for it. It is a good cause, and my brother-in-law has diabetes so it feels good to help a cause that impacts his life everyday. – Amy

Clickstop employees donated a lot of money to the cause. What does that mean to you?

This means a lot because I was worried about being able to raise our team contribution on my own. Clickstoppers always come out in a big way to support causes in the community and events that their fellow Clickstoppers are passionate about. We would not have been able to do this without the support of our friends and family at Clickstop. Thank you everyone for participating in our fundraiser! – Joe

Everyone at Clickstop knows that I love riding my bike, so to feel so much support for my hobby is amazing. Then add on the fact that they would help raise money for a cause that affects so many people, it is just amazing. What a great group of people. -Amy

Why is it important to you to ride for a cause such as this?

Events like this help raise money and support causes that would otherwise not get the kind of attention and fundraising that is needed to combat ailments that do not have a cure. I am supporting this event as a tribute to my grandmother who struggled for many years of her life, and hope to support a cure for others who are still struggling with diabetes. – Joe

I love being able to be physical to help raise money. I feel like I can help out a good cause, while promoting activities such as biking (or running!). – Amy

Why is it a good idea to join the Clickstop team?

It will be a fun way to get together outside of work and support a great cause! – Joe

The more the merrier! I know a big bike ride can seem intimidating to some people, but there are multiple ride options. A 25 mile ride, a 50 mile ride, or even a 100 mile ride. Any biking level can join and still have fun. Plus, you will get to hang out with some really cool people, meet some of the friendliest individuals on two wheels, and  you will be supporting research that could bring on the cure for diabetes. Join us! You will not regret it! -Amy

Meet our Technology Team!

Meet our Technology Team!

We have many teams through out the company. Marketing, Sales, Finance, Manufacturing, Shipping, LTL, Purchasing… The list goes on.  But there is one team that sticks out because it has some of the funniest and quirkiest people in the company. Our Technology team. The team consists of five guys, all completely different from each other, but with one commonality, they are technology nerds.

We wanted to get to know them a little bit and find out what they find rewarding about their career, what they like about Clickstop, and what they look for in a co-worker. First though, let’s introduce you to the guys!

Technology Team

From left to right; Wesley, Tom, Ben, Keith, and Brad

 

Tom Altman – VP of Technology – 6.5 years

Wesley McElwee – Web Developer – 3 years

Keith Shaffer – Web Developer – 2 Years

Ben Heims – Project Coordinator – 1.5 years

Brad Jackson – Senior Developer – Just shy of 1 year

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Clickstop’s Chili Cook Off was a hit!

Clickstop’s Chili Cook Off was a hit!

Last week Clickstop got to experience one of the most delicious days of the year, our annual Chili Cook Off!

Six employees entered the competition, their sights set on the coveted traveling trophies. Even though only six employees entered this year, we still had some incredible chili to judge. As soon as lunch time hit, employees swarmed the Bistro, ready to taste test each, deciding on which was the best in each categories. The categories included Best Original, Best Spicy, and Best Unique. Luckily, we had 2 in each category, though one, a Spicy Chicken Chili, was a spicy/original hybrid. Cheese, sour cream, and Fritos were available to top everything off. And we also had some cornbread made by our Chef, Zach. A perfect addition, and a nice neutral treat that came in handy between the spicier entries. Thanks Zach!

After a few hours of a constant flow of people testing out the Chili and picking their favorites, the votes were counted and the winners were crowned! The winners were…

Jamie – Best Spicy
Danee – Best Unique  (Second year running!)
Tammy – Best Traditional

We want to thank all of the individuals who entered into the competition. They were all amazing, it was definitely difficult to pick the winners!

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Planning for Your Future – Career and College Fair

Planning for Your Future – Career and College Fair

Earlier this month, Clickstop had the opportunity to attend the Planning for Your Future – Career and College Fair; hosted by Workplace Learning Connection and Marion High School. Forty Five Workplace Learning Connection business partners and 12 colleges were in attendance, including Clickstop. 200 area high school students and their parents were able to get their questions answered and seek out career opportunities for the students close to graduating.

Clickstop was represented by Sandra and Summer. Sandra works on our Manufacturing team and Summer is part of the Talent Enrichment team. So, let’s find out what they thought of the experience.

Clickstop at Planning for Your Future Career Day

Summer and Sandra getting ready to speak to students at Planning for Your Future

What did you think about your experience at career day?

Sandra: I thought it was awesome! It was the first one I have been to with a company and enjoyed it a lot. We had some pretty great students who asked really well thought out questions and         seemed really interested.

Summer: It was wonderful! The event was very well organized. The students and parents were very engaged and interested in learning about Clickstop. We got asked some great questions and had some awesome conversations.

What advice would you give students who will soon be entering the workforce?

Sandra: I think the best advice given to any high school student or anyone about to enter the workforce is to find something you truly enjoy and to find a company you enjoy working for. The more engaged and connected you are with your company, the more fun and awesome work is going to be. On average, we spend about 30 percent of our life working, so it’s important to find something you’re going to enjoy doing.

Summer: Be curious and be honest. Ask lots of questions, businesses love to see people who are curious and engaged  in what the role is and what the company does. Remember that an interview is two sided; you should be evaluating if the organization is a fit for you, just as they evaluate if you are a fit for them.

What advice would you give someone who is thinking about applying at Clickstop?

Sandra: Be sure to look at and know our core values and our code. Be sure that Clickstop is going to be the right fit. We want to find not only the perfect fit for our company, but for you as well.

Summer: Be yourself. We are looking for people who naturally operate within our values. Be enthusiastic. We are looking for people who want to drive change and create momentum, so seeing applicants that get excited over the task at hand shows the kind of enthusiasm we are looking for.

What type of people does Clickstop look for when hiring?

Sandra: We look for people who are not only going to be incredibly hard working employees but who also follow the code and core values. These factors are important within Clickstop and we want people who value them as well.

Summer: At Clickstop we look for people who align with our values and code, which are extremely important to us. Values coupled with high achievers makes for very fun and fulfilling work!

What is the most rewarding thing about working at Clickstop?

Sandra: The most rewarding thing about Clickstop for me, is knowing there are endless opportunities for those who want them. Clickstop isn’t a company where you have to stay doing the same thing for the rest of your career. If you want to pursue other opportunities they support you 100%.

Summer: Do I have to pick just one? I would say being able to work alongside so many passionate people who are driven to be excellent at what they do.

Meet our Culinary Expert, Chef Zach!

Meet our Culinary Expert, Chef Zach!

When people ask me about Clickstop, they always ask the same questions. What do you guys do there? (We are an e-commerce business that owns and operates 7 online businesses. US Cargo Control is our biggest brand, supplying products we manufacture to truck drivers.) What do you do there? (I work on video, communication, and social media.) And finally, the one people are most shocked about… YOU DRIVE ALL THE WAY TO URBANA TO WORK?!?  Well yes. When you find a place that you fit in, enjoy, and can do what you want for a career, the commute is not that big of a deal.

This is not just the way I feel. This is the way a lot of employees at Clickstop feel. Urbana may not be a thriving metropolis, but it is the town Clickstop is proud to call home. We have employees that commute from Cedar Rapids, Waterloo, Solon, Ely, and even Tama and Guttenberg. That says a lot about the community Clickstop has built in our little corner of Urbana. We are able to attract people all over Iowa because of our reputation as a company that does well by their employees.

With our new expansion, we will also have even more amenities that draw people in. We will have a gym, a game room, and probably the most anticipated, a full kitchen. You see, Urbana does not have a lot of options for places to enjoy your lunch. So, in order to make our employees lives more balanced, nutritious, and convenient, we are launching our new food program, Fuel. We are moving up! The head of Fuel, and a very talented culinary artist, is Chef Zach.

Fuel Food Program

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Clickstop Building Expansion Construction Update

So much can change in just a few short months!

Have you seen our building expansion construction lately? From the outside, not much has changed except the addition of a fresh thick layer of snow. But on the inside, we have made quite a bit of progress! From drywall and doorways, to carpet, flooring and lighting, things are really taking shape. We are expecting to make the big move sometime in April, fingers crossed. But for now, we can just wander over to the building and take photos for all to see. Check it out!

 

Let’s start with a few areas you may have already seen.

The ground floor of the building has been in various stages of construction for awhile. The main office area and offices are pretty much complete. In fact, a few of the rooms already have furniture and will soon have the finishing touches, such as photos and plants. Mitch has been hard at work putting together the furniture one room at a time. As you can see, there are five or so rooms that have pieces of furniture together.  Shout out to Mitch for his hard work, and shout out to Ben and Leslie for making sure to sit on every chair when they were shopping for our furniture. So far, everything is quite comfortable! Our behinds say thanks!

Up Next… The Locker Rooms and Lactation Room

One of the many great things about the new space; there will be plenty of restrooms and locker rooms. Before our expansion started, we only had a ladies and men’s room, one unisex restroom in the warehouse, and two restrooms with showers in the fitness area. And with over 100 employees, we needed more! Well, now we have it! The manufacturing space has their own nice restrooms. The new office space will have another set of restrooms. There will be a set of locker rooms with three private shower stalls, and even be a private lactation room for the new mothers. In case you missed it, we are expecting 8 new little ones in our extended Clickstop family! Check out the blog post here!

Kitchen, Grand Room, and Pub

Chef Zach is getting excited as construction continues! The floor of the kitchen was laid last week. This week, different pieces of the kitchen are being installed. He will soon be out of our bistro and into a real Chef’s Kitchen! We are excited as well, since we miss eating his delicious soups and warm meals. The kitchen is going to have a prep space in the back, a separate room for the freezers and refrigeration, a large area for dishes and cleaning, and a large walk through space with a serving counter, salad bar, beverage station and much more.

When you walk out of the kitchen space, you will walk into the grand room. The grand room will have seating for everyone to enjoy their lunch. At the front of the room is a stage and TV wall for company wide meetings. In the back of the room is our pub. Booth seating and atmosphere! You can enjoy  your lunch in this room, have meetings, or just take a quick break from your day! Though there is a lot of construction that still needs to happen, but with a little imagination, you can see Clickstoppers gathering.

 

Media Room, Game Room, and Gym

These three rooms might be three of the most anticipated spaces! (Well, two of them at least. I am a bit biased on the Media room since I am the videographer.) So let’s start with the Media Room. Long gone will be the days of the cramped tornado shelter! Yep, that is where the media room used to be! At least I knew the cameras were safe during bad weather. Once construction is finished and we move into this space, there will be a separate room for photography. The Media Room will be spacious and have room for growth.

The Game Room… I do not know how else to explain this room other than massive! This room is quite exciting to see come together. We have plans to paint murals on the walls. There will be plenty of seating for relaxing and playing games; A pool table and ping pong table of course. And the rest of the room… you will just have to wait and see!

The Gym is incredibly exciting. We currently have a small gym in our building but this is going to be much more spacious! There will be room for cardio equipment, weight lifting, and even a separate room for working out to videos. No more being self conscious about jumping and dancing around while you work out!

Construction of Everything else!

And here is a look at everything else! We have a lot of conference room space for one on ones, team meetings, and even quick pow wows. The building will have really nice finishing touches as well, including a stone wall, cement planter, lots of plants and natural light. There will be areas to relax and areas to buckle down to really get some work done. Though the construction is still pushing forward, we are getting really anxious to move into the new space.

So there you have it! As you can see, the construction is coming along. Subscribe to our blog, or keep checking back for more updates!

Make Time for Fun & Family with our Expecting Moms!

Make Time for Fun & Family with our Expecting Moms!

Life is crazy. One minute you are living your normal day-to-day life. You get up, shower, eat some breakfast, and you are off to work.  The next minute you are celebrating a big event, or making a big move, going on vacation, or maybe just spending the day relaxing. At Clickstop, we want every employee, and each family member of our employees, to feel secure in the knowledge that life happens. We want our employees to work hard and play hard at Clickstop and at home. That is why one of our core values is Make Time for Fun & Family.

In our company history, we have made this core value a showcase of our company culture. And it is just as important today as it has ever been. At Clickstop, we currently have 6 expecting moms! SIX!!! We also have 2 gentlemen that have wives that are expecting. And there are two ladies out on maternity leave at the moment. Whew… LOTS OF BABIES! So we wanted to ask the expecting moms of Clickstop about Make Time for Fun & Family.

Clickstop's Expecting Moms

From left to right… Rachel, Tammy, Bri, Sarah, and Sara are all expecting! And they look beautiful!

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Come On Down! Sharyl’s Price Is Right Experience

Clickstoppers live by our Core Values. Think Big and Make it Happen, Communicate Openly with Confidence & Respect, Expect Greatness in Yourself & Inspire it in Others, Be Adventurous, Embrace & Drive Change, Promote a Winning Team Spirit, and Make Time for Fun & Family. We guard these values closely and see them every day in our work. We get excited to see employees embrace these values and help promote a collaborative experience within Clickstop.

One person who can be seen achieving and promoting these values is Sharyl Voss. Sharyl is one of our earliest manufacturing employees. She has worked in many areas of the department and  comes to work with a smile, ready to tackle the day. It wasn’t a surprise that she was presented with two tickets to see The Price Is Right Live.

“Sharyl is awesome for starters and I wanted to do something to show her that I appreciate what she does every day. Not just a gift card but an experience that would mean something to her.” said VP of Manufacturing, Scott Keeling, who surprised Sharyl with the tickets. “I heard her talking in the Bistro one afternoon with Joan – she was talking about how she really wanted to go to the show.” So Scott decided to make that happen. Describing Sharyl as a person with an “awesome attitude that inspires those that she works with,” Scott presented her with the tickets and told her to have fun.

“We are lucky to have Sharyl, she is an awesome teammate and our company and department would not be the same without her.” said Scott.

So, let’s find out what she thought of the experience!

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Introducing Clickstop’s Dream Big! Scholarship

We can hardly believe we are coming up on graduation season.

But believe it or not, high school seniors all over Iowa are dreaming about their big day. Even if it still seems far off, there is no time like the present to plan for the future.  Clickstop employees went through the same situation and know how much work goes into planning. But Clickstop is giving students a helping hand with the Dream Big! scholarship program!

Check out the press release below to get all of the details. Then, if you qualify, head over to the Dream Big! Scholarship page.  We hope to see many students apply!

 

Clickstop Seeks Applicants for New Dream Big! Scholarship

Clickstop recently introduced a scholarship program for area high school juniors and seniors planning to attend a college or trade school.

The Dream Big! Scholarship honors the company’s commitment to promoting students’ educational growth and development. Four $500 scholarships will be awarded.

“We’re dedicated to supporting the local students in our backyard, those who work at Clickstop and the children of our employees,” said Sarah Watson, Talent Experience Architect at Clickstop. “These students will be the workforce in the Cedar Rapids/Iowa City corridor, and we believe in making an investment into our future talent.”

Eligible individuals include juniors or seniors in the Vinton-Shellsburg or Center Point-Urbana districts. Clickstop employees or their children also are invited to apply. A minimum grade-point average of 2.7 is required.

Applicants will be asked to submit a photo or short video showcasing their personality, as well as the type of career they’re interested in pursuing, goals after high school, community involvement, extracurricular activities, how they take time to enjoy life and a letter of recommendation.

In addition, they must explain how their principles align with Clickstop’s Core Values and/or Code. The series of behaviors have been embedded into the company’s culture to help guide business decisions, recruit top talent, drive employee development and create a great work environment.

“Clickstop is excited to launch this new scholarship program,” Watson said. “It allows us an opportunity to give back to youth in our area while fulfilling a piece of our mission – to create a sustainable business. Talent is a critical component to our company’s success, and we value continued learning and development opportunities at all stages in life.”

For more information, visit clickstop.com/dream-big-scholarship. Application deadline is March 31, with recipients announced April 14.