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Newsletter Article February 26, 2024

Ascendium's Education Philanthropy Announces Strategic Promotions to Elevate Impact

Ascendium is pleased to announce the promotions of three internal team members. In their new roles, Deputy Director of Learning and Impact Jessa Valentine, Senior Program Officer of Strategic Engagement Amy Kuether, and Program Officer Ashley Parker will propel new and ongoing initiatives. These organizational changes signal Ascendium’s commitment to the evolving needs of learners from low-income backgrounds.

Newsletter Article February 14, 2024

Michigan Community College Association Lays the Groundwork for State-Level Policy Changes

The Michigan Community College Association (MCCA) is a leading advocate for postsecondary education and workforce development in Michigan, collaborating with the right people to implement and scale effective programs as well as informing state-level representatives of what student success could look like for thousands of learners in the state. The efforts of organizations like MCCA help lay the groundwork for program and policy changes that result in improvements to postsecondary education and workforce training systems.

Ascendium in the News February 13, 2024

Open Campus to partner on collaborative reporting projects with Arizona, Montana, North Carolina, and Utah newsrooms

Open Campus has selected four local newsrooms to support as they build their capacity to cover postsecondary education and workforce training, particularly in rural communities. As part of its partnership with Ascendium, Open Campus will continue to grow its collaboration with local newsrooms in expanding local coverage of topics in higher education.

Ascendium in the News January 30, 2024

SUNY Prison Programs Get Funding

Around 19,000 individuals in New York's prisons are eligible for college, but only 7% of them can access publicly funded postsecondary education. A recent grant aims to help the State University of New York (SUNY) enhance educational opportunities and equity for incarcerated learners in New York.

Newsletter Article January 30, 2024

Building Data-Driven Pathways to Good Jobs Through Community Partnerships

How can postsecondary education and workforce training institutions help ensure that talent pipelines for good jobs are effective, equitable, and data-driven? Two new grants that focus on community partnerships to support developing pathways informed by labor market data may help answer this question.

Newsletter Article January 30, 2024

State-Level Initiatives Paving the Way for Postsecondary Education in Prison

In order to address barriers facing incarcerated learners, it’s imperative that we put our support behind state-level actors such as departments of corrections, which wield control over both access to and the allocation of resources for education in prison. Collaboration between these state-level actors and public universities and university systems is vital to creating high-quality postsecondary education in prison programs that set learners up for success upon release.

Newsletter January 18, 2024

Postsecondary Education and Workforce Training Trends, Ascendium Welcomes Three Members, and More

  • Postsecondary Education and Workforce Training Trends We’re Watching in 2024
  • Ascendium Welcomes Three Members to Education Philanthropy Team
  • Grants to Community-Based Organizations Aim to Strengthen Workforce-Aligned Training Pathways for Rural Learners
News Release January 16, 2024

At 50, Literacy Network Empowers Dane County More Than Ever Thanks to Funding from Ascendium

As Literacy Network celebrates 50 years of transforming lives through literacy, the organization faces an unprecedented demand for its services. More than 55,000 adults in Dane County struggle with low literacy — enough to fill more than three Kohl Centers (source: Literacy Network). Literacy Network supports them by offering literacy services to improve their skills in English language communications, reading comprehension, and information technology. As a result, these adults advance their careers, help their kids succeed in school, become U.S. citizens, understand health information, and obtain their high school diploma or other degrees.

Ascendium in the News January 11, 2024

Stackable Credentials: Making College Work for More Students

Stackable credentials are a way for learners to build their education and careers in steps, but evidence for these programs is scarce. RAND researchers pulled data from two states to learn if the programs deliver, under what circumstances, and for whom.

Newsletter Article January 10, 2024

Grants to Community-Based Organizations Aim to Strengthen Workforce-Aligned Training Pathways for Rural Learners

Over the past two years, the federal government has invested billions of dollars to create good-paying jobs as part of President Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” framework. Additional legislation, like the Inflation Reduction Act and the CHIPS and Science Act, aim to create millions of new jobs through investments in clean energy and advanced manufacturing. Collectively, this legislation generates opportunities for rural learners seeking good jobs. It also accelerates the need for rural training pathways that prepare these learners.

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