Antioch University Santa Barbara (AUSB) has been awarded a Department of Education (ED) Title III grant in the amount of $1.6 million for the establishment of a five-year initiative supporting low-income and minority student retention and degree completion.
Title III grants are allocated to support educational institutions in the expansion of their capacity to serve low-income and minority students by providing funds to improve and strengthen academic quality and institutional management. As a Hispanic Serving Institution, AUSB was eligible to compete for Title III funds. The institution was among 35 higher education institutions nationally, and one of only four in California, to receive funds under the U.S. Department of Education’s Strengthening Institutions Program.
The Federal funds, totaling $1.6 million over the next five years for AUSB’s College-to-Career initiative, represents 73% of the program’s $2.2 million cost; the remaining 27% will be paid with non-Federal funds.
AUSB’s successful grant application is consistent with President Obama’s priorities to increase the number of Baccalaureate degrees awarded to lower-income and Hispanic students and to prepare them with the job skills necessary for employment after graduation, and thus enabling the U.S. to compete more successfully in the global job market.
“This grant reflects AUSB’s dedication to increasing diversity and access to higher education,” said President Nancy Leffert. “I’m incredibly excited that AUSB will be able to strengthen the things we already do well and provide the additional supports that will assist our students in launching their careers after graduation.”
The innovative and multi-faceted College-to-Career program will offer additional student services support for those students who may be at-risk of not completing their degree as well as enhancing academic success and degree completion through proactive advising and accessible writing and math tutoring.
“The Title III grant award will also enable us to emphasize the development of job skills and the employability of our graduates through a cooperative work education program,” said College-to-Career program director Dr. Catherine Radecki.
To enhance the career readiness of AUSB’s graduates, the program will include the development of community worksites and internships that offer students relevant work experience, job skills, and career mentoring. In addition, it will feature career assessment and advising and training in employment skills, such as resume preparation, job interview practice, and networking with potential employers.
AUSB serves a diverse student body, the majority of who have transferred from Santa Barbara City College and other regional community colleges in order to complete their Bachelor’s degree. The program will utilize best practice strategies to increase degree completion among students of whom English may not be their first language.
“As a Trustee of AUSB’s Board of Trustees’ and chair of its Hispanic Outreach Committee, I am extremely proud that the U.S. Department of Education has recognized our efforts to serve underrepresented, low-income students,” said Patricia Chavez Nunez. “This grant will enable us to provide more services and promote even greater student success.”
AUSB will initiate the first phase of the College-to-Career program immediately. For more information about AUSB’s Bachelor of Arts Completion Programs, scholarships, and admissions, visit www.antiochsb.edu/admissions or call the Admissions Office at (805) 962-8179.