Post-secondary Success

A college education has become ever more essential to getting a stable job with good wages. But decades of success in getting more students of color and students from marginalized communities into college has not translated into more equitable college attainment. Race and family wealth are ever more predictive of who will get a college degree - suggesting that we are moving further away from equalizing college opportunity. Worse still, post-graduate salaries and debt repayment outcomes are deeply inequitable, especially by race. The median Black student owes more on student loans than they borrowed twelve years after enrollment. It appears likely that a subset of colleges, especially in the for-profit sector, are leaving students worse off than if they had avoided higher education altogether. The Foundation supports research, public policy development, and advocacy on how our nation’s higher education system can increase economic mobility and racial equity in the Great Lakes region. Removing barriers to college attainment for students of color and students from marginalized communities is essential to keeping our nation, states, and cities economically competitive.

Goal: Eliminate race- and family income-based gaps in baccalaureate college attainment and post-graduate outcomes through state and federal policy, ensuring fair access to higher education for all students.

Objectives:

  1. Advance federal and state policies to scale up proven community college student support models
  2. Advance state and federal policies that preserve access for students of color and rural students to affordable, high-quality public college options and to labor markets that have begun to require college degrees
  3. Advance state and federal policies and advocacy to achieve racial and family income representativeness at selective public universities
  4. Support advocacy, litigation, and policy development to narrow gaps in post-graduate financial outcomes (e.g., debt default, loan repayment, wages) for historically underserved students
News

Aspen Prize guides giving to community colleges

The rigorous Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence is being credited with guiding philanthropist MacKenzie Scott in her recent barrage of giving to higher education institutions.

Policy Watch

K-12 “toolbox”

School districts across Illinois have received a “toolbox” of recommendations for helping teachers and students rebound from lost learning after a year of interruptions during the COVID 19 pandemic.

Research Report

Building Bridges to Post-secondary Success in Minnesota

A group of education and workforce leaders in Minnesota released a report with a comprehensive set of recommendations to ensure that more young people earn a post-secondary degree or credential.

Webinar

Building bridges to post-secondary success in Minnesota

A group of education and workforce leaders in Minnesota released a report with a comprehensive set of recommendations to ensure that more young people earn a post-secondary degree or credential.

News

Foundation welcomes Williams, Khimm and Ezeigbo

Foundation hires new Gun Violence Prevention & Justice Reform and Education & Economic Mobility program officers, and Culture program director.