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EDUCATION PHILANTHROPY DIVISION OF ASCENDIUM EDUCATION GROUP

All Grants

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Strong Start to Finish - Accelerating Scaled Implementation

Scaling
Education Commission of the States|$2,500,000|9/2022 - 12/2026
This grant supports Education Commission of the States, through its Strong Start to Finish initiative, in accelerating the implementation of complex developmental education reforms at scale in up to eight state higher education systems.

Accelerating Just Transformation in the Foundational Postsecondary Experience

Exploration
John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education|$1,000,000|12/2022 - 6/2026
This grant supports the Gardner Institute, through the Accelerating Just Transformation in the Foundational Postsecondary Experience (TFPE) project, in working with cohorts of colleges with growing populations of first-generation, low-income and minoritized student populations to redesign the first-year student experience. TFPE will enable institutions to redesign practices that impede success for learners from low-income backgrounds and identify and act on targeted reforms to promote equitable student success.

Pathways to Success for Adults with Some College but No Degree

Validation
Tennessee Board of Regents-The College System of Tennessee |$1,900,200|6/2022 - 5/2026
This grant supports the Tennessee Board of Regents in using insights from prior Ascendium-funded research to redesign the experience of adults with some college but no degree who reconnect with college. Designed as a randomized control trial, the project will evaluate how the redesign of the reconnecting semester for adults returning to community college impacts persistence, completion and time to degree.

Scaling the Leadership Academy for Student Success

Scaling
New Venture Fund|$1,062,925|12/2022 - 12/2025
This grant supports National Center for Inquiry and Improvement (NCII) in replicating the Ohio Leadership Academy for Student Success in two to three additional states. NCII will work with selected states to implement key elements of the Ohio model for providing targeted training for leaders within community colleges, thereby building state- and system-level capacity to implement wide-scale strategies for student success.

Advancing Digital Skilling in Rural America

Exploration
Center on Rural Innovation Inc|$1,331,200|12/2022 - 12/2025
This grant supports the Center on Rural Innovation (CORI) in building pathways to tech employment for learners from low-income backgrounds in rural communities. This investment will help six communities in CORI’s Rural Innovation Network to identify tech employment needs among local employers and design and implement tech training programs designed to meet the needs of rural learners and local employers.

Advancing Community College Students’ Post-Graduation Success

Exploration
The Aspen Institute Inc|$2,000,000|6/2022 - 11/2025
This grant supports The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program in supporting a cohort of 10 community colleges to implement policy and practice reforms that will increase the postgraduation success of their students, namely students of color and learners from low-income backgrounds.

Aligning Employment and Education Systems for the Success of Low-Income Working Adult Learners: The Achieve Your Degree Program

Validation
The RAND Corporation|$647,100|10/2022 - 9/2025
This grant supports The RAND Corporation in studying the design and outcomes of Ivy Tech Community College's statewide Achieve Your Degree program, which helps working learners earn skills needed to advance in their jobs through employer tuition assistance and dedicated academic and non-academic supports.

Scaling IT Support and Data Analytics Certificate Programming for Learners from Low-Income Backgrounds

Scaling
Merit America|$10,000,000|9/2022 - 8/2025
This grant supports Merit America in its goal to help 20,000 learners move from low-wage jobs to in-demand technology careers over the next three years. This investment will enable Merit America to scale their operations and leverage up to $45 million in funding from the $100 million Google Career Certificates Fund.

Launching Civic Sector Apprenticeships in Rural Communities

Exploration
The Council of State Governments|$693,800|9/2022 - 8/2025
This grant supports the Council of State Governments (CSG) and Urban Institute in working with state and local governments and public sector employers in Maine and Idaho to implement apprenticeship programs targeted to learners from low-income backgrounds. New apprenticeships will provide paid training and onramps to good civic sector jobs that are currently experiencing a shortage of qualified workers in rural communities.

Enhancing and Expanding the Transfer Explorer Tool

Scaling
Ithaka Harbors Inc|$1,716,350|9/2022 - 8/2025
This grant supports Ithaka in enhancing and expanding the Transfer Explorer tool so that more transfer students have prior credits applied to a four-year degree, leading to reduced cost, reduced time-to-degree and a greater chance of completion.