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Special Initiatives

ECMC Foundation makes investments in targeted ideas and solutions within individual focus areas and cross-cutting multiple focus areas that offer promising directions forward for the postsecondary education field.

These special initiatives include:

Transformational Partnerships Fund

Established by ECMC Foundation and SeaChange Capital Partners, with additional founding support from Ascendium Education Group, The Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and The Kresge Foundation, the Transformational Partnerships Fund (TPF) is the first of its kind, providing colleges and universities support to explore student-centric partnerships and collaborations that could meaningfully transform how they operate and enhance their ability to provide reliable, high-quality educational opportunities for students. With an initial budget of $2.5 million and making individual catalytic grants of up to $100,000, the Fund will support public and nonprofit colleges and universities interested in exploring a range of partnerships and collaborations, which may include mergers on the one end to administrative shared services and consolidated programs on the other end.

Learn more about the Transformational Partnerships Fund

CTE Leadership Collaborative

CTE Leadership Collaborative (LC) is a $20 million, 7-year initiative focused on bringing together diverse perspectives and equipping CTE leaders with the tools, resources and skills needed to advance postsecondary CTE. Rooted in the belief that prepared and diverse leadership leads to better outcomes, each LC grantee provides professional development opportunities for individuals dedicated to improving postsecondary CTE.

Learn more about the CTE Leadership Collaborative

Improving Online CTE

Improving Online CTE is a $2.5 million investment in innovative solutions to improve student outcomes and close equity gaps in online CTE. The goal of CTE CoLab, led by Urban Institute in partnership with five national organizations, is to work toward reducing completion gaps in online postsecondary CTE programs, especially for Black and Latinx students, and seed the innovative change that CTE needs to meet this moment and thrive in the future.

Learn more about Improving Online CTE

Single Mother Student Success

Single Mother Student Success is a $10 million effort to boost the share of single mothers who attain an associate degree over 5 years. Single mothers, who represent about 11% of all undergraduate students in the United States and are disproportionately women of color, have lower graduation rates than other students. Nine in ten single mother students have incomes at or near the poverty line and nearly half (44%) attend community colleges. Higher rates of college attainment among single mothers would substantially improve economic security and long-term outcomes for their families.

Learn more about Single Mother Student Success

Basic Needs Initiative

As the first national postsecondary education funder to address basic needs among college students with a designated grantee cohort, ECMC Foundation provided $3.1 million to support the Basic Needs Initiative, a wide array of projects that aim to increase students’ access to such basic needs as food, housing, childcare, mental health, financial assistance and transportation.

Learn more about the Basic Needs Initiative

Catalyzing Transfer Initiative

Transfer credit losses hinder students from completing their degree, contribute to greater student debt and saddle federal financial aid programs with greater inefficiency. ECMC Foundation provided $4.5 million to launch the Catalyzing Transfer Initiative and support the development and wider adoption of clear and equitable transfer agreements, ensuring less credit loss for students. CTI specifically aims to increase the number of Black and Latinx community college students transferring to and graduating from four-year programs.

Learn more about the Catalyzing Transfer Initiative

Innovative Financing Models

Beginning in 2021, ECMC Foundation will invest up to $2.5 million through Education Innovation Ventures into short-term training and education programs that use innovative financing models to accelerate the upskilling and retraining needed for America’s unemployed workforce to find gainful employment and attain family-sustaining wages.

Learn more about Innovative Financing Models

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Our Grantees

Stories from the Field

Find stories of innovation and inspiration from our grantee partners, who are working to improve postsecondary outcomes for students from underserved backgrounds.

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