June 26, 2012
Northampton Community College has become one of 15 colleges nationwide chosen to receive a $100,000 "PRESS for Completion" grant from the Walmart Foundation. "PRESS" stands for Persistence, Retention, and Student Success. The announcement was made on June 25 in Reston, Virginia.
The grant will enable Northampton to involve more full- and part-time faculty in efforts to improve student performance in math and English courses important to students' overall success in college.
Northampton was selected because of its record as a "Leader College" in "Achieving the Dream," a national nonprofit organization committed to educational reform.
According to a news release issued by Achieving the Dream, "Leader Colleges show that it is possible [for community colleges] to raise persistence and graduation rates, close achievement gaps, and improve lives."
Fifty "Leader Colleges" were eligible to apply for the PRESS for Completion grants. The 15 who were selected "have met high standards of practice and performance" says Rachel Singer, Vice President of Achieving the Dream, Inc.
Northampton has agreed to serve as a peer coach and to share results of its work with the other 175+ colleges in the Achieving the Dream National Reform Network.
The project director will be Dr. Elizabeth Bugaighis, of Bethlehem, dean of education and academic success at Northampton. She will be assisted by Dr. Precie Schroyer, assistant professor of English, and Charlie Mathers, an associate professor of mathematics. Both Schroyer and Mathers teach at NCC's Monroe Campus.
The other community colleges chosen to receive PRESS Completion grants are Aiken Technical College in South Carolina, Alamo Colleges in Texas, Brazosport College in Texas, Community College of Beaver County in Pennsylvania, Cuyahoga Community College in Ohio, Durham Technical Community College in North Carolina, Guilford Technical Community College in North Carolina, Northern Essex Community College in Massachusetts, Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College in South Carolina, Pulaski Technical College in Arkansas, Roxbury Community College in Massachusetts, Tallahassee Community College in Florida, Valencia College in Florida, and Yakima Valley Community College in Washington.
The Walmart Foundation is committed to helping people live better around the globe. In May of 2010, Walmart and its Foundation made a five-year pledge of $2 billion to fight hunger in the United States. The Foundation also supports education, workforce development, environmental sustainability, and health and wellness initiatives.
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