Notre Dame de Namur University Receives Second Grant from U.S. Department of Education For $3.2 Million To Support Programs For Hispanic Students

Belmont, CA., October 3, 2011—For the second time in a week, Notre Dame de Namur University (NDNU) has received a grant from the United States Department of Education to fund expansion of support services and scholarships for Hispanic and low-income students. This latest grant for $3.2 million is the largest federal grant in the university’s history. It comes on the heels of a $2.9 million grant that focuses on expanding programs for Hispanic students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programs. This latest grant was awarded under the department’s Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSI) program; NDNU is one of only thirteen schools to receive this award. NDNU is the only four-year, private university in Northern California to hold the HSI designation, which means that at least 25 percent of its undergraduate population is composed of students who identify themselves as Hispanic.

The grant, which will be paid out over five years, will finance the university’s “Improving Student Retention and Academic Success at NDNU” project, which aims to support the success, retention, and graduation of its Hispanic and low-income students by:

  • Helping students navigate and engage with the college environment with student success coaching
  • Identifying academically at-risk students and providing academic support services to help those students overcome poor academic preparation
  • Developing articulation agreements with community colleges to facilitate transfer
  • Raising endowment funds for scholarships to support students financially
  • Addressing issues of language barriers and access to information by providing translation and interpretation services

“NDNU has a strong commitment to provide access to quality higher education to underserved populations,” said NDNU President Judith Maxwell Greig, Ph.D. “Currently, we provide first-generation students, most of whom are Latino/Latina, with a foundation for success through our Gen 1 program; this grant will allow us to expand and improve upon our current support services for students in all majors.”