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CNR Announces $4 Million FIPSE “First in the World” Grant from U.S. Department of Education

Second Multi-Million Dollar Grant Received To Support Students’ Retention and Graduation Rates

The College of New Rochelle (CNR) today announced a $4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), First in the World (FITW) program.  As the only private college in New York State to receive funding, The College of New Rochelle will use the grant to pilot test Mentoring, Undergraduate Research, and Augmented Libraries (MURAL), which aims to create a set of model interventions to improve adult students’ grades, retention, and four-year graduation rates in a variety of settings and collect data on successful practices to share with institutions who serve similar student populations. 

This is the second multi-million dollar educational grant the College has received this academic year, having received a Title III grant for $10 million from the U.S. Department of Education earlier this month.

“After receiving nearly 500 applications from around the country, we’re excited to announce The College of New Rochelle will receive a First in the World grant, funded for the first time this year,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.  “Each grantee demonstrated a high-quality, creative, and sound approach to expand college access and improve student outcomes.  We are confident these projects will have a positive impact on increasing access and completion and help us reach President Obama’s 2020 goal, to once again have the highest share of college graduates in the world.”

“Receiving two such significant federal grants within weeks of each other is truly a validation of the College’s ability to improve our students’ success through this innovative program. This grant will have a tremendous impact on The College of New Rochelle and our students, enabling us to further support and enhance students’ learning experiences. These newly revised research-infused curricula and support services will be integrated into the College’s academic programs, further strengthening how students use technology, information, and language efficiently and effectively,” said Judith Huntington, President of The College of New Rochelle.

“We are proud to be one of just 24 institutions selected from hundreds of applicants to be a recipient of this grant and to stand beside such an impressive list of college and universities, which include Northeastern University, Bryn Mawr College, and Purdue University, in striving to improve student success,” said Huntington.

Led by Ana Fontoura, the Dean of CNR’s Libraries, MURAL will create librarian-faculty-writing specialist-student services/case manager teams that undertake professional development, produce curriculum and provide services. MURAL also includes enhanced services for the College’s six campuses: greater access to librarians and the creation of a Learning Commons (an open space that provides electronic library resources, information technology, intensive writing assistance, support for online education, in-person and online tutoring, and collaborative group work).

“We are extremely pleased to have been selected for this grant in support of President Obama’s initiatives to increase postsecondary access and completion and are grateful to U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand for their ongoing support of the President’s higher education agenda,” said Huntington.

“This $4 million award is great news for The College of New Rochelle, and is its second major federal grant award in this academic year, showing its true commitment to excellence and to constantly improving its programs for students. This federal funding will allow The College of New Rochelle to test its Mentoring, Undergraduate Research and Augmented Libraries (MURAL) pilot program, which aims to improve student retention, overall academic performance and graduation rates,” said U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer. “This grant will ultimately help The College of New Rochelle best prepare students for the work force while they are on campus and provide them the skills needed to succeed after graduation.”

“This is an important federal investment to better prepare our students for 21st century job opportunities and improve student retention through graduation,” said U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “The College of New Rochelle will build its information technology and language skills programs, providing the necessary resources and support so that students can go as far as their own hard work will take them.”

The first Catholic college for women in New York State, The College of New Rochelle was founded in 1904 by the Ursuline Order.  Today, it comprises the all-women School of Arts & Sciences, and three schools which admit women and men: the School of New Resources (for adult learners), the School of Nursing and the Graduate School.  The main campus of the College is located in lower Westchester County, 16 miles north of New York City.  The College maintains five other campus locations in New York City for the School of New Resources in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Manhattan.  Visit the College’s website at www.cnr.edu.

Guest Post Submitted By:  The College of New Rochelle

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