INDIANAPOLIS—Lumina Foundation has funded grants to 20 community colleges in eight states with efforts to increase adult student enrollment.

The Prioritizing Adult Community College Enrollment initiative identifies and supports promising strategies for increasing adult participation—particularly among Black, Hispanic and Latino, and Native American students—in quality credit-bearing and non-credit programs.

“Helping more adults earn credentials of value starts with having labor-market-aligned programs that adults can enroll in and succeed,” said Chauncy Lennon, Lumina’s vice president for learning and work. “The colleges receiving grants are prioritizing adults by strategically supporting their participation at scale.”

A partnership effort of Achieving the Dream, Ideas 42, rpkGroup, Equal Measure, and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, will support the community colleges. The group includes five rural, six suburban, and nine urban colleges. Among these are eight Hispanic-serving institutions, one historically Black college, one Asian American and Native American-Pacific Islander-serving institution, and one institution designed solely to serve incarcerated students.

Each college will receive a flexible grant of up to $75,000, along with technical assistance in behavioral design and planning for sustainable enrollment efforts. As coordinating partner, Achieving the Dream will facilitate peer learning and the development of a digital toolkit to share lessons with colleges nationally.

“The grant comes at a time of significant importance for community colleges as we work to reduce barriers for adult students,” said Monica Parrish Trent, Achieving the Dream’s vice president for network engagement. “We are excited to collaborate with Lumina and national partners to support these 20 colleges in boosting enrollments and credential attainment by holistically serving adults, particularly adult learners of color, and disseminating learnings into the field.”

The schools will use a broad range of strategies such as boosting online enrollments, increasing community-based recruitment and enrollment, expanding adult program sites and approaches, and putting in place adult-focused marketing and outreach plans.

These community colleges will receive grants:

About Lumina Foundation
Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation in Indianapolis that is committed to making opportunities for learning beyond high school available to all. We envision a system that is easy to navigate, delivers fair results, and meets the nation’s need for talent through a broad range of credentials. Our goal is to prepare people for informed citizenship and for success in a global economy.

About Achieving the Dream
Achieving the Dream (ATD) leads a growing network of more than 300 community colleges committed to helping their students, particularly low-income students and students of color, achieve their goals for academic success, personal growth, and economic opportunity. ATD is making progress in closing equity gaps and accelerating student success through a unique change process that builds each college’s institutional capacities in seven essential areas. ATD, along with nearly 75 experienced coaches and advisors, works closely with Network colleges in 45 states and the District of Columbia to reach more than 4 million community college students.


Back to News