More on the $100K grant

The official press release about the 100K grant I said we were awarded has been put out.

Here's the full scoop:

INDIANAPOLIS (Oct. 28, 2008) — More than $500,000 is being pumped into local programs that help students find success in the classroom and prepare for life after high school.

The gifts come from the College Readiness Fund, created earlier this year through a $2.6 million grant from the Lumina Foundation as a way to improve access to college, help students prepare for continuing education and enhance college success.

The Fund administrator, Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), announced this week that 10 local organizations would be among the first to receive grants, which will be used to reach out to Marion County students and their parents, particularly minorities, low-income families and students who are the first in their families to attend a two- or four-year college.

“Many first-generation students have not even considered college as an option,” said Roderick Wheeler, grants officer at CICF. “We’re working to break down those kinds of barriers with this program. Our message is simple: College is possible for all students.”

Two organizations received $100,000 gifts. The Center for Leadership Development will use the funding for its College Prep Institute, a program designed to equip African-American college-bound students and their parents with the necessary tools to succeed in college. Starfish Initiative, which works with at-risk and economically challenged high school students, will use the funding to continue to provide and build its one-on-one mentoring programs for youth.

“We are thrilled and sincerely honored the College Readiness Fund has selected CLD as one of its collaborating partners to help the students of our community excel in high school, college and life,” said Dennis Bland, president of the Center for Leadership Development. “This tremendous grant affords CLD a powerful opportunity to help prepare hundreds of youth throughout Indianapolis for the highest academic, college and career success. Along with other community partners who care deeply about the academic crisis we face, we can begin to lay a foundation for establishing within our city and state, a culture of academic excellence where high school and college achievement is the expectation and norm.”

The College Readiness Fund will provide grants annually to nonprofit organizations with programs focused on reducing the high-school drop-out rates, increasing college readiness skills or increasing college attendance rates.

“Most students understand that going to college is important, but they don’t all know how to take the steps to make it possible,” said CICF’s Wheeler. “The College Readiness Fund will help provide additional resources, so professionals dedicated to helping youth succeed can show students and their parents the steps they need to take.”

An important partner in the College Readiness Fund is the 21st Century Scholars, a publicly funded program that facilitates training and provides scholarships to students who wish to attend a two- or four-year public college or university in Indiana. The 21st Century Scholars program registers participants in grades 6 to 8 and leverages additional financial resources for College Readiness Fund participants and their parents.

College Readiness Fund grants awarded to 10 organizations
Center for Leadership Development: $100,000
Starfish Initiative: $100,000
Indiana University’s University College: $70,000
Encouragement Services, Inc.: $50,000
YMCA of Greater Indianapolis: $60,000
LaPlaza Inc.: $40,000
College Mentors for Kids: $30,000
The Indiana Partnership Center: $25,000
Indiana Youth Institute: $25,000
College Resource SAT prep: $10,000
Total grants awarded $510,000

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