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Our philanthropy elevates rural postsecondary education and workforce training, long absent from education reform efforts.
Disparities in postsecondary success between rural students and their urban and suburban peers exist at every point in the pipeline, from enrollment to completion. These disparities contribute to a shortage of skilled, qualified workers, which affects the economic health of both families and entire communities.
We support efforts that can help the field better understand rural learners and postsecondary providers, strengthen those providers, and improve collaboration and partnership to support rural learners from enrollment to workforce entry.
The efforts we fund are broad, system-changing initiatives, so the outcomes we seek are broad as well: advancement of a rural research agenda; data infrastructure that allows data sharing, tracking and reporting; more postsecondary providers implementing evidence-based best practices to support student success; researcher and peer partnerships at the systems level.
We fund initiatives that develop collaborative, sustainable systems and best practices for system change along the postsecondary education and workforce spectrum. This means collaboration between researchers, funders, postsecondary providers and employers, supported with research, data systems, professional development and opportunities to connect with others regionally and nationally.
We also fund efforts that develop and support postsecondary education and employment pathways. This means supporting postsecondary programs of study aligned with community needs, building provider capacity to support students as they navigate those systems, and expanding job training models for high demand fields to ensure successful postsecondary to career transition.