Adams State College is launching an Emerging Scholars program that will expand services and support for first-generation college students, according to Adams State Provost Michael Mumper. Program start-up will be funded by a $100,000 Walmart Minority Student Success Award, recently granted by the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP).
“This really is good news,” Mumper said. “I think the new Emerging Scholars program we proposed will make a big difference to our first generation students.” He noted Adams State was one of 15 schools whose proposals were funded, out of 85 applicants. The $100,000 grant is made possible by a $4.2 million grant to IHEP from the Walmart Foundation.
The program’s goal is to bring the retention and graduation rates of first-generation students up to that of their non-first-generation peers. In fall 2008, 37 percent of Adams State’s undergraduates were first generation; 36 percent of that group was Hispanic. Hispanics comprise between 25-28 percent of non-first-generation students.
“The Emerging Scholars program will create an academic and social support system that includes faculty mentoring, as well as several classroom-based elements,” said Adams State STAY (Structured Transitional Academic Year) Coordinater Karen Lemke, who took
the lead on developing the grant proposal. Brian Rauscher, director of Student Support Services, and Karla Hardesty, assessment coordinator, also participated in grant development.