St. Edward's University selected to receive $100,000 Wal-Mart College Success Award
The Wal-Mart College Success Award will enable the university to implement a four-week Summer Bridge for First-Generation College Success. The program will focus on improving students’ writing in English, reading, math, and study skills.
“We are honored by this award,” said President George E. Martin. “St. Edward’s is committed to preparing a diverse student body to lead, contribute to and serve an ever changing world. The new summer program supported by our Wal-Mart Award will help our first generation freshmen get off to a strong start. We are certain that lessons learned from this program will benefit other universities and inform future programs for all students.”
Intensive English language assistance will also be offered to the large percentage of Hispanic students who make up this population, many of whom are sons and daughters of migrant and seasonal farm workers. To offset lost wages during the four-week period, students will receive stipends upon completion of the program. Stipends will also be made available to students to cover travel expenses to and from campus for the summer program.
“CIC was delighted that 217 institutions—more than a third of its membership—applied for the grants. More importantly, we were amazed at the outstanding quality of their programs—truly a testament to the efforts of private colleges to ensure the success of first-generation students,” said CIC President Richard Ekman in announcing the awards. “These awards will help strengthen those programs and also provide recognition that their work is important,” Ekman added.
“Wal-Mart is proud to support programs that enable first generation students to succeed in college,” said Margaret McKenna, president of the Wal-Mart Foundation. “Wal-Mart’s partnership with CIC identifies institutions committed to the success of first generation students and will help identify and share effective programs.”
Nationwide, at all colleges and universities, only 24 percent of first-generation students succeed in earning a bachelor’s degree compared with 68 percent of students whose parents received a bachelor’s degree. The colleges that have been selected for the Wal-Mart College Success Awards have developed programs that result in higher percentages of graduates among their first-generation college students than the national average, and many graduate first-generation students at the same rate as all other students.
The Wal-Mart College Success Awards program is administered by the Council of Independent Colleges and made possible by a generous grant from the Wal-Mart Foundation.
For more information about the Wal-Mart College Success Awards and the programs of the 20 winners, visit the CIC website at www.cic.edu/projects_services/walmart_college_success.asp.