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ECMC Foundation Grants More Than $8 Million to Postsecondary Education Programs

An Announcement from Vice President Lynn Alvarez

February 26, 2020

I am pleased to announce that ECMC Foundation recently committed $8,174,383 to 12 organizations. These grants support our grantees’ efforts to expand research and public policy efforts, launch new programs to help students enrolled in postsecondary programs, pilot innovative solutions to help student parents, among many others.

These commitments reflect our mission and dedication to advancing postsecondary educational outcomes for students from underserved backgrounds across the Foundation’s College Success and Career Readiness focus areas.

A selection of grants made are listed below. For the full list, please visit ECMC Foundation’s website at

College Success

  • A grant of $700,000 was made to the National League of Cities (NLCI) to support the expansion efforts of its work with municipal leaders who seek to develop policies and practices that remove key barriers to postsecondary completion. The goal of NLCI is to move from its current seven-city focus to a much broader scale, focusing especially on its basic needs initiative.
  • A grant of $300,000 was made to College Access Information Continuum to support the enhancement of Project Gateway, an effort aimed at increasing the pass rate for transfer-level math courses for California community college students enrolled in Santa Ana College (SAC). The goal is to equip SAC math faculty with effective tools, resources, and pedagogical practices while offering students additional academic supports to increase course pass rates.
  • A grant of $635,500 was made to the John Jay College of Criminal Justice to support the pilot of Linking Experience, Academics and Practice (LEAP), a cohort-based program that will provide a low-cost suite of supports for incoming first-year students who are not currently engaged in a student retention program on campus. The goal is to develop an evidence base for an affordable and scalable model that raises students’ persistence and degree completion rates.

Career Readiness

  • A grant of $600,000 was made to the Aspen Institute to support Phase II of the Postsecondary Success for Parents Initiative at Aspen Ascend. The goal is to build a movement and catalyze investment in supports for parents, specifically single mothers, attending community colleges.
  • A grant of $438,883 was made to Credential Engine to help the statewide systems map and publish credential data and individual institutions in Los Angeles County and the surrounding region publish information about credentials in one sector that augments the data provided at the system level. The goal is to make information about all available credentials in the state published to the Credential Registry, where credential data is accessible to benefit the public at large.
  • A grant of $300,000 was made to the Foundation for California Community Colleges (FoundationCCC) to merge Corrections to College CA into a fully integrated program within the FoundationCCC to expand its reach. The goal is to support institutions within the California Community Colleges to more effectively serve justice-involved students.
  • A grant of $750,000 was made to the Women’s Foundation Southern Arizona to launch Pathways: Elevating Self-Sufficiency for Single Mothers, a two-generation pilot program that will support single mothers working toward earning a one-year credit-bearing certificate in a career field that pays a self-sufficient wage at Pima Community College in Tucson, Arizona. The goal is to serve 100 women, receive reimbursement from SNAP CAN to cover tuition and administration costs, and provide a proof of concept for policymakers interested in passing legislation to allow postsecondary CTE to qualify as the employment requirement for state-issued childcare subsidies.

Special Opportunities

  • A grant of $250,000 was made to the National Public Radio to help sustain NPR’s postsecondary education journalism. The goal is to continue reporting on issues affecting postsecondary students, faculty, administrators, and communities throughout the country and produce more than 350 stories on education over the course of one-year grant period.

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