Front of Ralston Hall

NDNU Selected To Receive $100,000 Grant From CIC/Walmart Foundation To Help First-Generation Students Succeed In College

Belmont, CA, May 18, 2010 — Notre Dame de Namur University has been chosen by the Council of Independent Colleges to receive a  $100,000 grant from the CIC/Walmart College Success Awards program to help fund NDNU’s “Gen-I” Program, which uses multiple strategies to provide academic support for first-generation students.

NDNU was one of only 20 universities to receive the highly-competitive, two-year, $100,000 grants from the CIC program, which is funded by a $3 million grant from the Walmart Foundation and is intended to support institutions that are already heavily committed to serving first-generation students.  Another 10 universities received $50,000 awards.

“We are extremely grateful to CIC and the Walmart Foundation for this grant to support NDNU’s first-generation students. First generation students often lack the resources and academic preparation of students whose parents attended or graduated from college and, as a result, often have a more difficult time adjusting to college life,” said NDNU President Judith Maxwell Greig. “It has always been part of NDNU’s mission to provide access to students who otherwise would not be able to receive a college education and this has always meant finding ways to help them make that transition so they could succeed and graduate. This grant will enable NDNU to greatly expand the services it has available for first-generation students.”

NDNU’s multi-pronged Gen-I program includes a variety of targeted activities to increase the number of first-generation students who successfully make the often- difficult transition from freshman to sophomore year. These include instruction in critical personal strategies such as time management, financial literacy, stress management, etc.; a student skills pre-assessment and counseling regarding courses appropriate to these skill levels; a learning strategies course to teach them study skills; a peer mentor program in which incoming first-generation students are paired with third-year first-generation students; and outreach newsletters and campus presentations for parents of first-generation students.

Gen-I participants who successfully complete all program activities and achieve at least a 2.5 grade point average during their freshman year will be named Gen I Scholars and be awarded $1,500 scholarships for their sophomore years, over and above the financial aid awards for which these students would normally qualify.

About The Council of Independent Colleges
The Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) is an association of more than 600 independent, liberal arts colleges and universities and higher education affiliates and organizations that work together to strengthen college and university leadership, sustain high-quality education, and enhance private higher education’s contributions to society. To fulfill this mission, CIC provides its members with skills, tools, and knowledge that address aspects of leadership, financial management and performance, academic quality, and institutional visibility. The Council is headquartered at One DuPont Circle in Washington, DC. For more information, visit www.cic.edu/.

About Philanthropy at Walmart
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are proud to support the charitable causes that are important to customers and associates in their own neighborhoods. The Walmart Foundation funds initiatives focused on education, workforce development, economic opportunity, environmental sustainability, and health and wellness. From Feb. 1, 2009 through Jan. 31, 2010, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation gave more than $512 million in cash and in-kind gifts globally, $467 million of which was donated in the U.S. To learn more, visit www.walmartfoundation.org