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Welcome 2022 ECMC Foundation Grantees and Investees

An Announcement from Vice President Lynn Alvarez

February 22, 2022

As part of our commitment to strengthening higher education and career success among underserved populations, ECMC Foundation is proud to announce a new series of grants and investments made as of February 15, 2022. This round of recently-approved grants and investments aims to improve postsecondary career and technical education, accelerate student success and advance critical education-to-career pathways to bolster the nation’s healthcare workforce amidst the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. The total funding is $5,400,160.

A selection of grants made are detailed below. For a full list of the Foundation’s active and inactive grants, please visit ECMC Foundation’s website at

Career Readiness

Corporation for a Skilled Workforce ($442,160) will pilot the use of college promise program resources to fund the Ability to Benefit (ATB) provision and enable students without a high school diploma/high school equivalency to earn six college credits at two community colleges in Illinois and two colleges in Michigan. The goal is to enroll 100 students in the pilot and utilize learnings to scale the use of the ATB provision to include students without a diploma or high school equivalency in college promise programs throughout the country.

ECMC Group ($500,000) will conduct a second Question the Quo campaign. The goal is to contribute to the national dialogue regarding the benefits of career and technical education.

Propel America ($500,000) will improve Accelerate’s Medical Assistant program design, develop new healthcare pathways, and refine employer engagement strategies. The goal is to expand the Accelerate America program to five new states, serve 360 learners across the United States, and position the program for further growth.

Wellesley College ($1,100,000) will launch the Student Parent Action through Research Knowledge (SPARK) Collaborative to: identify lessons from Illinois, Michigan, and Oregon (which require student parent data collection); help a cohort of four community colleges and one community college system in states with data collection mandates collect and utilize data; and disseminate learnings to policymakers and higher education leaders. The goal is to help practitioners and policymakers utilize data-driven decision-making to ensure postsecondary success, especially for student parents and single mother students.

Workcred ($758,000) will partner with the League for Innovation in the Community College and the National Student Clearinghouse to implement certification and degree (C+D) pathways into associate degree coursework at five community colleges (embed industry-recognized certifications, or IRCs). The goal is to establish a process for low-cost replication of C+D pathways and offer community colleges a scalable approach to align degrees with industry needs.

College Success

The California State University (CSU) Foundation ($600,000) will accelerate institutional change and advance systemwide student success priorities through the Graduation Initiative 2025. The goal is to increase graduation rates, eliminate equity gaps, and meet California’s workforce needs across all 23 CSU campuses. 

The University of North Carolina System Office ($600,000) will replicate the City University of New York’s (CUNY) Accelerate, Complete, and Engage (ACE) model at four UNC institutions. The goal is to evaluate learnings from the pilot to improve transfer student success efforts across the system.

Education Innovation Ventures

Brighthive ($500,000) will pivot from its current services business, which helps organizations develop and implement data trusts, or large-scale data sharing arrangements between organizations, to a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model. The goal is to bring to market a platform that unlocks self-service data sharing for the entire learn and work ecosystem.

Jobs for the Future launched the Financing the Future Initiative ($400,000) in 2020 with the goal of exploring how new ways of paying for postsecondary education and training - or innovative financing - can promote opportunity and racial, gender, and economic equity.

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