Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation (Great Lakes) today awarded grants to 26 Wisconsin programs that share its commitment helping disadvantaged students increase academic preparedness for postsecondary education. The grants, totaling $3.1 million, are awarded through Great Lakes’ new Community Investments program.

Programs funded through Great Lakes 2012 Academic Preparedness Grants demonstrate a focus on measurable outcomes in support of their approaches to helping disadvantaged students start and complete a degree, certificate, or credential beyond high school. Grants have been awarded in two areas:

Wisconsin Educational Growth Grants
A growing number of disadvantaged students throughout Wisconsin are entering higher education without the academic skills they need to succeed and complete their degree. Increasing numbers of these students need remedial course work to prepare for college level study, which leads to higher debt burden and drop-out rates. Academic enrichment in elementary, middle, and high school can reduce the need for remediation and increase postsecondary success. Through its Wisconsin Educational Growth Grants, Great Lakes is providing $2.3 million to 17 programs helping first through twelfth grade students and adult learners enter higher education more academically prepared, so they are more likely to graduate. A list of grant recipients follows.

Wisconsin Summer Learning Grants
Research indicates that when students are not engaged in learning over the summer, they lose math and reading skills. Further, students from low-income families are affected at a higher rate than their peers, and losses are cumulative throughout elementary, middle, and high school. The loss of skills during summer impacts not only a student’s success from one grade to another, but also their likelihood of high school graduation and success in college. The nine programs, receiving a total of more than $768,000 from Great Lakes’ Wisconsin Summer Learning Grants, provide much needed academic support to third through twelfth grade students and adult learners during the summer months. A list of grant recipients follows.

“We are pleased to fund these 26 Wisconsin programs that show great promise in closing the education gap for the nearly 4,500 students they will serve,” said Richard D. George, President and Chief Executive Officer of Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation and Affiliates. “Great Lakes is committed to working with programs that share our commitment to measurable results that can provide a blueprint for what works to increase educational success for a more economically competitive Wisconsin.”

Following is a complete list of Great Lakes 2012 Academic Preparedness Grants.

Great Lakes 2012 Academic Preparedness Grants

Following is a complete list of today’s grant recipients and descriptions of their projects to address academic preparedness. Additional grant opportunities will be released in early spring 2012. To be notified of Great Lakes’ grant opportunities, please email your contact information to communityinvestments@glhec.org.

Wisconsin Educational Growth Recipients

Blackhawk Technical College
Preparing for Postsecondary Success

With funding from a $300,000 grant, this program will provide pre-college courses and services to 100 high school seniors and 1,050 adult learners with skill gaps, allowing them to increase skills enough to test out of remedial education.

Boys & Girls Club of Dane County

Four hundred and fifty students in four Madison high schools, with support from a $130,000 grant, will receive experience-based academic support in the form of mentoring, field trips, and access to a guest speaker series. The support is intended to help the students improve their grade point averages and enroll in postsecondary education at a higher rate than their peers.

Boys & Girls Club of Dane County
College Club

A $300,000 grant will allow for the expansion of College Club to serve 60 students at the Boys & Girls Club in first through eighth grades, and establish programing for 155 students at two middle schools in Madison to increase their grade point averages.

Boys & Girls Club of Dane County
Verona College Club

A grant of $110,815 will be used to increase grades and test scores of the ninth and tenth grade participants and allow the program to provide tutoring, mentoring, and college and career exploration to 50 students at Verona High School.

Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee
ACT Prep Workshops

The ACT Prep Workshops offered by the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee, with the support of a $22,400 grant, will give 60 students the opportunity to attend summer workshops designed to increase ACT test scores through intense academic enrichment activities.

Chippewa Valley Technical College
Collaboration for Achieving Postsecondary Success
Eau Claire

A $27,499 grant will support the placement of 25 disadvantaged high school students in summer school coursework at Chippewa Valley Technical College. A team teaching model with additional mentoring, basic skills instruction, and follow-up during the school year will assist students with improving academic outcomes.

College Possible
Milwaukee High School Program

Three hundred and fifty low-income high school junior and senior students attending eight Milwaukee high schools will be placed into cohorts of ten to fifteen and receive one-on-one guidance, academic assistance, and preparation for ACT/SAT exams to help increase their test scores with the help of a $290,933 grant.

Edgewood College
Committed to College

A $10,008 grant will fund this pilot project pairing Edgewood College student tutor/mentors with twelve eighth and ninth graders in Madison. College students will receive training in tutoring and mentorship skills, while middle and high school students receive homework help and weekly tutoring with the goal of increasing their grade point average.

Mid-State Technical College
Pre-Program Preparation Project
Wisconsin Rapids

A grant of $53,793 will allow the existing Pathways Project to expand to serve 48 students in twelfth grade at two Wisconsin Rapids high schools. Students will increase math and reading skills allowing them to test out of post-secondary remedial course work.

Operation Fresh Start
Middle College Program

Academic counseling, tutoring and specialized coursework supported by a $58,102 grant will allow 32 adult student learners without high school credentials to increase their reading and math capabilities while earning credits and moving towards degree programs at Madison College.

Pathways to College
Pathways Pre-College Component

A $100,978 grant will allow Pathways to College to serve 179 Milwaukee middle school students who are focused on improving their grade point averages. The students, representing 17 public and private city schools, will gain access to an after school tutoring program, Saturday enrichment activities, and a three-week summer academy.

University of Wisconsin Foundation
PEOPLE Program

Thanks to a $300,000 grant, 605 high school students in 14 counties will be served with case management, tutoring, test preparation support, residential summer coursework, and internships aimed at helping to improve grade point averages and standardized test scores.

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
Phuture Phoenix
Green Bay

A grant of $177,579 will allow Phuture Phoenix to serve 220 high school students in Green Bay with tutoring, mentoring, and ACT preparation programs to increase their grade point average and improve ACT scores.

University of Wisconsin-Parkside
Stepping Stones

This academic enrichment, academic mentoring, and college readiness program, serving 60 seventh graders in Racine and Kenosha, will benefit from a $141,848 grant. The program’s objective is to help students increase their grade point averages and performance on timed tests.

University of Wisconsin-Superior
Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness in Superior

Ninety students at Superior Middle School will receive tutoring, campus visits, and participate in academic enrichment activities through this grant of $90,438. UW-Superior students will provide the tutoring service, with a goal of increasing middle school students’ grade point averages.

University of Wisconsin-Waukesha
ACT Preparation

Supported by a grant of $34,200, 90 students will receive intensive academic support to increase their ACT scores.

Urban League of Greater Madison
College Readiness Academy

A $152,038 grant will allow the Urban League to operate 14 ACT preparation academies, with the goal of increasing ACT scores for 200 students in the Madison area.

Wisconsin Summer Learning Recipients

Carroll University
CEO Carroll Connection

A $14,427 grant will allow 40 high school freshmen and sophomores from CEO Leadership Academy to participate in a one-week ACT preparation boot camp, with a goal of increasing ACT test scores.

Forward Service Corporation
Upward Bound Summer Residential Program
Camps in Wausau, Green Bay, and Menomonee

A $149,520 grant will allow 140 rising tenth and eleventh grade students to attend a five-week residential Upward Bound summer camp during which they take classes in English composition, math, science, and Spanish. The goals of the camps are to combat summer learning loss and to increase grade point averages.

Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College
Academic Preparedness Program

Twenty returning adult college students will receive instruction in English, math, computers, and writing, with support from a $54,922 grant. The program objective is to improve participants’ test scores by one grade level, and support their transition into postsecondary education.

Marquette University
Milwaukee Summer Reading Project

A $150,000 grant will allow 160 rising third and fourth grade low-income students from four Milwaukee public, choice, and charter schools to receive 120 hours of instruction in spelling, vocabulary, fluency, phonics, and comprehension. The goal is to improve reading comprehension skills of students by almost a full grade level, thus helping to prevent summer learning loss.

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College Educational Foundation, Inc.
Fostering Futuremakers Summer Camp 2012
Green Bay

A $7,457 grant will enable 20 rising college freshmen who have been in foster care to attend a one-week residential summer learning program and receive instruction in math, reading, and sentence skills. The goal is to increase the participants’ test scores by at least five points and help them enter postsecondary education academically prepared.

UWM Foundation, Inc.
UWM Gear Up Focus Summer Academy

Through a $150,000 grant, 100 rising seventh and eighth grade students will receive six weeks of intense academic preparation programming in reading, writing, math and science. Programming is intended to result in a ten to fifteen percent increase in participants’ test scores.

University of Wisconsin-Platteville
Scholars Unleashing Collegiate Creativity & Enriching Educational Development (SUCCEED) Summer Learning Program

A $94,806 grant will allow 50 rising college freshmen to attend three weeks of math, English, and writing classes with the purpose of increasing test scores by five to ten points, thus enhancing preparedness for higher education.

University of Wisconsin-Whitewater
Summer Enrichment for Academic Excellence

This program will enable 50 Wisconsin high school students to attend a summer residential camp. An $85,134 grant will support instruction in math, science, and ACT preparation classes with the goal of increasing the participating students’ ACT scores by one point and increasing their math and science knowledge by ten percent.

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College
Summer Learning Program
Shell Lake

Eighty returning adult students will be supported by a $62,205 grant. The goals of the Summer Learning Program are to increase college readiness in reading, writing, and math by one grade level. Upon completion, students will be better prepared with the academic and personal skills necessary for success.


Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation and Affiliates works with schools, lenders, and community organizations to change lives for the better through higher education. Great Lakes supports these partners with financial, educational, and operational resources that help students and families pay for college and build brighter futures. As a leading guarantor and servicer of student loans for over forty years, Great Lakes serves the U.S. Department of Education and over 6,000 schools and 1,100 lenders across the nation. One of the nation’s largest integrated providers of student loan services, Great Lakes services more than $95 billion in student loans for over 8 million borrower accounts and holds guarantees on approximately $41 billion in FFELP loans. Great Lakes member corporations serve as the designated guarantor for Minnesota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands under the Higher Education Act. Great Lakes is headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin, with operating centers in Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin. For additional information, visit mygreatlakes.org.

For more on grants and grant writing, visit Grant Pros.

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