Bowie, Md.—Bowie State University has been selected by the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) to receive a Walmart Minority Student Success Award—a $100,000 grant to help build on BSU’s demonstrated successes in enrolling, retaining, and graduating first-generation college students. The $100,000 grant is being made possible by a $4.2 million grant to IHEP from the Walmart Foundation.
Bowie State was selected as one of only 30 minority-serving institutions (MSIs) —Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Predominantly Black Institutions, and Tribal Colleges and Universities—through a highly competitive application process to strengthen efforts to support first-generation students.
Bowie State representatives will be attending the annual IHEP Summer Academy, where they will be joined by representatives from 14 other minority serving institutions, to establish action plans to increase capacity, share ideas to better serve first-generation college students and develop partnerships with other colleges and universities.
“We are honored to be selected to receive the Walmart Minority Student Success Award,” said Mickey L. Burnim, president of Bowie State. “Thanks in large part to this award, our faculty will be able to enhance their development of pedagogical practices that improve first-generation students’ learning.”
Bowie State’s program, Scholars’ Studio: Developing Scholars through Faculty Engagement, supports our current institutional objectives of improving retention and graduation rates and narrowing the academic achievement gap. The project is designed to help our faculty develop pedagogical practices that will improve first-generation students’ self-efficacy and self-regulation, resulting in enhanced and lasting learning.
“Our students desire success, but are often ill-equipped for academic rigor. This project supports faculty’s role in helping first generation students transform from student to scholar. We are excited about this unique opportunity to have a positive impact on the culture of teaching and learning at Bowie State University.” stated Monica Turner, director of BSU TRIO-Student Support Services. “My other Bowie State colleagues working on this important project are Patricia Westerman, Lisa Nardi and Charles Adams.
“The institutions in our 2010 Minority Student Success cohort broaden and deepen the pool of MSIs committed to ensuring the success of the first-generation student success both at their campuses and beyond,” said Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) President Michelle Asha Cooper, Ph.D. “We are pleased to be working with them on programs that are sure to serve as models to all of higher education.”
”At Walmart, we understand that education is critical to the lives and well-being of all Americans. We’re proud to support giving that enables the success of first-generation college students,” said Margaret McKenna, president of the Walmart Foundation.
The Walmart Foundation grants support the existing work of MSIs to strengthen first-generation student success programs, with a special focus on classroom practices and the role faculty play in their students’ academic success. Approximately 41 percent of students enrolled at MSIs are first-generation, compared to 30 percent of students at Predominantly White Institutions. The overrepresentation of first-generation students at MSIs makes them ideal to help improve retention and persistence gaps for this student population.
The other 2010 winners include: Adams State College (Colo.), Bloomfield College (N.J.), Coppin State University (Md.), Delaware State University (Del.), El Camino College (Calif,), Fort Belknap College (Mont.), Hampton University (Va.), Leech Lake Tribal College (Minn.), New Jersey City University (N.J.), United Tribes Technical College (N.D.), University of Houston- Downtown (Texas), University of New Mexico (N.M.), Valencia Community College (Fla.), and Winston-Salem State University (N.C.).
For more information about the initiative and grantees, visit the IHEP Web site at www.ihep.org/walmartminoritystudents.cfm.
About Bowie State University
Bowie State University (BSU) is an important higher education access portal for qualified persons from diverse academic and socioeconomic backgrounds who seek a high quality and affordable public comprehensive university. The University places special emphasis on the science, technology, teacher education, business, and nursing disciplines within the context of a liberal arts education. For more information about BSU, visit the website at www.bowiestate.edu. For more information about the 145th anniversary visit the website at http://www2.bowiestate.edu/145/.
About The Institute for Higher Education Policy
The Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) is an independent, nonprofit organization that is dedicated to increasing access and success in postsecondary education around the world. Established in 1993, the Washington, D.C.-based organization uses unique research and innovative programs to inform key decision makers who shape public policy and support economic and social development. IHEP’s Web site, www.Ihep.org, features an expansive collection of higher education information available free of charge and provides access to some of the most respected professionals in the fields of public policy and research.
About Philanthropy at Walmart Stores, Inc.
Walmart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) and the Walmart Foundation are proud to support the charitable causes that are important to customers and associates in their own neighborhoods. Through its philanthropic programs and partnerships, the Walmart Foundation funds initiatives focused on creating opportunities in education, workforce development, economic opportunity, environmental sustainability, and health and wellness. From February 1, 2008 through January 31, 2009, Walmart – and its domestic and international Foundations – gave more than $423 million in cash and in-kind gifts globally. To learn more, visit www.walmartfoundation.org.
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Tammi L. Thomas
University Relations and Marketing