Ivy Tech will use the $2.7 million to continue its efforts to increase college completion rates as part of the college’s Accelerating Greatness strategic planning efforts. One of the college’s goals related to the strategic plan is to double the completion rate of its students by 2012-13.
“The grants announced by the departments of Labor and Education are another clear demonstration of the Obama-Biden administration’s commitment to our community colleges and their vital role in fueling the American economy,” said Dr. Jill Biden, in a statement. Dr. Biden also noted that the grants are an important deliverable from last year’s White House Summit on Community Colleges and one that will provide gateways to opportunities for many Americans. Ivy Tech Community College President Thomas J. Snyder attended that summit as a select number of community college presidents were invited to attend. Ivy Tech was also one of only four community colleges that hosted regional summits following the White House Summit.
“A well-educated workforce is essential to strengthening not only Indiana’s economy, but the economy of our nation,” said Snyder. “These generous grants from the departments of Labor and Education will help us continue to provide educational opportunities to our nation’s dislocated workers and ensure we can provide the programs and services to help them complete their education and land a good-paying job in the industries where workers are needed most.”
As part of a larger award of $19.7 million granted to the National STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Consortium, Ivy Tech will receive an additional $2.43 million. The Consortium is a collaborative of 10 leading community colleges in nine states organized to develop nationally portable, certificate-level programs in STEM and to build a national model of multi-college cooperation in the design and delivery of high-quality, labor market-driven occupational programs. The programs developed by the consortium will help build a national repository of high quality technical curricula and curricular materials that can be made available at no charge to all community colleges.
As part of the consortium, Ivy Tech will use the grant money to create and enhance several programs, including the Electrical Vehicle Technical program at its Lafayette campus, the Mechatronics program at its Gary and South Bend campuses, the Cyber Technician program at its Fort Wayne Campus and its Environmental Technician program also at its Fort Wayne campus.
The $5.1 million awarded to Ivy Tech is part of the nearly $500 million awarded by the departments of Labor and Education and is the first installment in a $2 billion, four-year investment designed, when in combination with President Obama’s American Jobs Act, to increase opportunities for the unemployed.
Ivy Tech Community College is the state’s largest public post-secondary institution and the nation’s largest singly-accredited statewide community college system with more than 200,000 students enrolled annually. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.