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Foundation awards nine mini-grants to student retention programs

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PCC Foundation, in partnership with the college’s Office of Staff and Organizational Development, announced the award of nine PCC Foundation mini-grants, supporting student retention.

The Foundation mini-grants give financial support to faculty and staff projects that improve the quality of instruction, programs, and services at PCC.  The mini-grant program uses funds raised through the annual Faculty/Staff/Retiree Campaign and through general Foundation fundraising. Mini-grants are given for projects that fall outside the college’s general fund budget and support the PCC mission.

The project received 22 mini-grant proposals, which were read and scored by PCC Foundation Board members and staff.  The selection committee selected the following nine projects for funding, totaling $13,115.

Matching Pre-College Readers with Books They Will Love – $2,000

Coordinators: Roberta Richards, Jane Rognlie and Robin Shapiro.

Supports the creation of a list of high interest books appealing to reluctant readers, and provides this list in a variety of formats for use by students, Developmental Education faculty, and librarians. Will provide funds to purchase approximately 165 books from the list for libraries at each campus and Southeast center.

Use of a Scoring Rubric To Develop Methods for Improving Student Retention in DE Writing Courses – $2,000

Coordinators: Jacqueline Raphael, Bill Bogart, Leslie Boyd, Theresa Love.

Refines and adopts a research-based scoring rubric for Developmental Education writing courses. The rubric will produce more transparent and consistent scoring of writing, which will increase clarity for students regarding the path to success in their courses, building student confidence and supporting retention and success.

Increase Tutoring Hours for Life Tracks Transition Program to Promote Student Retention – $1,994

Coordinators: Dana Jean Maginn, Linda Gettman, Emily Schulz.

Increases availability of academic tutoring for Life Tracks students. The Life Tracks program supports men and women who are first-generation students, single parents, or returning to school after a long break. These students are often poor, marginalized, and need individualized attention to build confidence and succeed.

ESOL Workshops to Improve Student Retention by Fostering Academic Success – $1,964

Coordinator: Dominique Brillanceau, Molly Burns, Elise McLain

Provides four 2-hour workshops for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) to help students understand the academic expectations at PCC, resources available to them, and strategies for learning. This new student-centered approach will engage students in the materials and seek their critical reflection.

Identifying Weaknesses for Anatomy and Physiology Students that Prevent Retention and Success – $1,795

Coordinators: Alexie McNerthney

Provides a series of tutoring seminars for students in rigorous Anatomy and Physiology courses. Students will get help with difficult concepts, and faculty will document data on problem areas for students. Data will be used to reallocate classroom time and resources and improve student success.

Enhancing Student Retention and Success through Improved English tutoring Related services – $1,700

Coordinator: Laurel Spillum, Andrew Black, Mary Meermans

Creates a training guide in video and notebook format to help train tutors and volunteer conversation partners who work with English language learners. This will support a uniform, efficient, and flexible training program for these tutors, whose numbers have increased significantly in recent years.

Early and Intentional Intervention with Academic Alert Students – $662

Coordinator: Sylvania Advising

Supports two workshops for students in their first PCC term who have been placed on academic alert. These students tend to be unaware of the implications of compromised academic standing or PCC resources available to help them. Expected to reduce the number of students who subsequently fall into Academic Probation.

Anderson Conference – Supplemental funding for Keynote Speaker – $500

Coordinator: Martha Bailey, Heather Dittmore, Chris Kernion, Christine Manning

Will contribute to the fee for bringing the keynote speaker to the signature professional development event for faculty at PCC. The speaker, Judy Arter, is an expert in assessment practices and will provide faculty with practical skills that have been tied directly to student retention.

Retaining Students through College Visits – $500

Coordinator: Lynn Montoya

Doubles the number of visits ROOTS students can make to 4-year colleges. The ROOTS Program serves academically underprepared, low income, first generation students and students who experience a disability. The visits will help foster academic goals and support progression to a 4-year institution.

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »

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