WHO WE SERVE

Students of Color, Low-Income Students & First-Generation Students

Traditionally these underserved students have the most to gain from a degree, but the least support in getting there. In fact, they are the least likely to complete a postsecondary program. They are the focus of our grantmaking.

HIGHER EDUCATION REMAINS THE SUREST PATH TO ECONOMIC PROSPERITY

The programs we fund serve students who face challenges their higher-income peers do not. At Ascendium we work to make postsecondary degrees, credentials and certificates available to as many students as possible. Specifically, we focus on those who traditionally have the most to gain from postsecondary education, but the least support in getting there: students from low-income families, students of color and those who are the first in their families to attend college.

THE EQUITY GAP

Many students face disparities in opportunity, income and access to education. We seek to level the playing field by removing barriers to and providing equitable opportunities for a chance at a better life through education.

LOW-INCOME STUDENTS

Students from low-income families are less likely to complete a bachelor's degree than their higher-income peers.

Low income students graph

Pell Institute, "Indicators of Higher Education Equity in the United States - 45 Year Trend Report," 2015

FIRST-GENERATION STUDENTS

Students who are from low-income families and are the first in their family to pursue postsecondary education have the lowest completion rates.
First-Generation Graph

Pell Institute, "Indicators of Higher Education Equity in the United States," 2017

STUDENTS OF COLOR

Despite growing postsecondary enrollment, students of color have lower levels of degree attainment than white students.
Students of Color Graph

Lumina Foundation, "Today's Student Statistics," 2015