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IU South Bend poised to support more 21st Century Scholars through Community Foundation Lilly Endowment Inc. grant

Dec 9, 2020

Indiana University South Bend will enhance support for 21st Century Scholars thanks to its partnership with the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County on a recently-awarded $4 million Lilly Endowment Inc. grant. The grant will support the 21st Century Scholar Success Initiative, an effort to dramatically increase the number of local low-income students who achieve well-paying jobs in our region by completing post-secondary degrees through Indiana’s 21st Century Scholars program.

IU South Bend is thrilled to be a part of this coalition aiming to increase access to higher education for local students and families, said Chancellor Susan Elrod. As this region’s public university, IUSB’s mission is to support anyone who wants to pursue higher education. This funding will help us provide greater support for these students so they can receive a college degree and pursue their passions.

IU South Bend will work closely with the Community Foundation and other collaborating partners on a three-year project. The funding provides staffing for a second success coach to provide outreach and support services to all IUSB 21st Century Scholars.

The Community Foundation has convened an outstanding coalition committed to helping local students and families imagine a brighter, more prosperous future for themselves, and, in turn, for our community as a whole, said Rose Meissner, president of the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County. This large-scale grant will allow us to change the futures of thousands of local students in the years to come.

IU South Bend currently enrolls over 350 21st Century Scholars and we know there are more we can serve. The two success coaches will provide dedicated advising for IUSB 21st Century Scholars and implement new program components and coordinate other aspects of a comprehensive 21st Century Scholar program, including:

Summer Jump Start Bridge Program:Scholars will be invited to participate in a special one-week Summer Bridge Program with a variety of academic, career planning and social activities designed to foster21st Century Scholars’ sense of belonging. 21st Century Scholars will learn the campus, meet their advisors and coaches, develop social contacts, and gain other student success skills.

First Year Seminars:First year scholars join with their21st Century Scholar peers in cohort-based sections of the First Year Seminars, which help students learn a variety of student success skills from writing research papers, to using the library, to exploring career options.

Additionally, scholars will take part in IU’s MoneySmarts U financial literacy program, special career assessment counseling and services, peer and alumni/community mentoring, and distinct cultural, social, and academic activities. Scholars will also be able to take advantage of existing IU South Bend programs such as living in River Crossing residence halls and access to summer On-Track scholarships to support scholars during summer school.

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