Since the Keys to Degrees program started at Endicott in 1992, it has been a source of pride for us. As this model continues to grow and gain notice with higher education groups, we’ve begun working with other universities to set up similar programs and expand opportunities for single parents. We just announced some very exciting news on this front – Keys to Degrees has received a grant for $700,000 to replicate its program at Dillard University in New Orleans!
The press release is below with all the details – keep an eye out for more news as we work with Dillard and other schools. We expect good things!
Endicott college Grows keys to degrees with grant from W.K. Kellogg Foundation
Single Parent Program Expanding to Dillard University; Furthering Academic Opportunities Available to Students with Young Children
Beverly, MA — Endicott College is pleased to announce that their nationally renowned Keys to Degrees residential program for single parents has been awarded a $700,000 grant for replication at Dillard University in New Orleans. The two-year grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation will also fund the continuation of successful Keys to Degrees programs at Eastern Michigan University and Ferris State University and includes funds to be used for evaluation, research, public policy development and dissemination of best practices in providing access to higher education for young parents.
“The Kellogg Foundation grant is a huge confirmation for us that the mission of this program is important to higher education administrators and policymakers alike,” said Dr. Richard Wylie, President, Endicott College. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Dillard University on their new program and also fund work necessary to bring these residential program benefits to locations across the country. After seeing so many success stories firsthand here at Endicott, the desire to help as many single parents as possible is a strong one. With the Kellogg Foundation’s support, we can continue, grow, and perpetuate this effort.”
The success of Keys to Degrees at Endicott College earned a grant of $400,000 from the Kellogg Foundation in 2009, which was for pilot replication of the program at Eastern Michigan University and Ferris State University in Michigan. Since implementation of those two programs, the push to provide similar opportunities for young parents has gained momentum nationwide. The new grant includes additional funding for Eastern Michigan and Ferris State to continue work with their programs.
Funded by the grant, this two-generation program, which provides educational opportunities for enrolled student parents and their children together, will now be implemented at Dillard University in New Orleans, Louisiana, beginning in fall 2013. Located in a state with high rates of teen parenthood and child poverty, Dillard is very highly regarded academically and provides a solid foundation for Keys to Degrees as part of their commitment to the success of all students.
“Our students have a need for a program like this, and we are absolutely excited to work with Endicott College to serve the needs of our single parents on campus,” said Dr. Kevin Bastian, Assistant Vice President for Student Success and Support Services, Dillard University. “Through this grant, our students can now focus on creating a better life for themselves and their children. I expect to enroll about 15 single parents our first year and I anticipate this program being received quite well within our community.”
Strategic support and guidance for the Keys to Degrees programs will be supported by The Aspen Institute, an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Ascend at the Aspen Institute was launched in 2011 to elevate two-generation strategies to move children and their parents beyond poverty toward educational success and economic security. Working with 20 Ascend Fellows, Ascend at the Aspen Institute is focusing on sparking a new conversation around low-income families, building a leadership network, and elevating two-generation community solutions and policies. Endicott College’s Dr. Wylie serves as an inaugural member of the 2012-2013 Ascend Fellowship class.
The Keys to Degrees: Educating Two Generations Together program was founded at Endicott College in 1992 to provide education opportunities to young men and women who become single parents before they are able to complete college. The program is designed for academically qualified single men and women, ages 18 to 24 at the time of their enrollment, who are the parents of one child. While these young parents complete their undergraduate degrees in an encouraging environment, benefits like campus housing and support services ensure the experience is positive and enriching for both parents and children.
“Thanks to the Keys to Degrees Program, I became the first college graduate in my family,” said Monica Arriaza Hernandez, Endicott College Class of 2007. “I am able to have a good career and a promising future. The program allowed me to grow as a student and as an individual, but most importantly, it provided the tools and support I needed to also grow as a parent. I’m overjoyed knowing that programs like these are expanding. These programs allow single parents who would otherwise not have the privilege or opportunity to gain their degrees and better their and their children’s future.”
As part of the grant, funding and support will go to a group of institutions utilizing single parent programs to assist in setting up an evaluation and data collection system that will be used in developing and reporting best practices.
For more information on Keys to Degrees, visitwww.endicott.edu/keystodegrees.