MSJC receives $2.8 million grant to improve student success

Grant is the largest in MSJC’s history
Sept. 30, 2010
Mt. San Jacinto College students will have access to more programs designed to help them succeed and stay in college and improve graduation and transfer rates thanks to a $2.8 million federal grant.
College officials announced the grant from the U.S. Department of Education – Developing Hispanic Institutions Grant Program on Thursday, Sept. 30, 2010. It is the largest grant in the college’s 47-year history.
“Mt. San Jacinto College is honored to receive this historic grant,” said Superintendent/President Roger Schultz. “It comes at a key time when state resources have been reduced and record numbers of students with unique needs are coming to MSJC. The grant will help all of our students succeed in higher education at a critical time in our country and region.”
The $2,806,060 grant will be awarded over a 5 year period starting in October.
The grant is designed to help Hispanic Serving Institutions, or those with a 25 percent or larger Hispanic student population. Twenty-nine percent of MSJC’s students are Hispanic and the Hispanic student population at MSJC has increased 170% between 2000 and 2010. The funding will support the entire MSJC student population, said Rebecca Teague, director of grants.
Tom Spillman, MSJC’s Dean of Counseling and Student Services, will serve as the grant’s project director.
"We plan on starting an extensive outreach effort focused on English as a Second Language and basic skills students in combination with a First- Year Freshmen Experience Program with targeted learning communities by the fall 2011 term,” Spillman said.
The grant’s main goals are to:
·        Increase student persistence rates, especially those students in the Basic Skills and English as a Second Language (ESL) programs.
·        Increase student success rates
·        Increase the number of students enrolled in credit ESL courses
·        Increase the number of students transitioning from non credit Basic Skills to credit Basic Skills
·        Increase distance education student success rates
·        Increase student graduation and transfer rates
Main grant activities:
·        Develop and implement ESL outreach and student retention program
·        Provide a First-Year Experience Program for students, including learning communities, supplemental instruction, embedded counseling, student workshops, student and parent orientations, mentoring and other student leadership activities.
·        Develop and implement a Distance Education Student Preparation and Success Program, which includes developing new procedures for online enrollment, new curriculum to provide students with technological and content-specific skills for success in online programs, develop a media-rich online orientation.
The grant will fund the following:
·        Software to support student success, including MS Word, Excel, Power Point and software that provides 24/7 access to an online tutorial system.
·        Class Climate, an evaluation and assessment software to gauge program success.
·        Personnel, including faculty coordinators, counselor, research analyst, academic advisors, tutors.
·        Classroom renovation.
·        Supplies/materials and travel to conferences
In 2008, MSJC received a $1.87 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to help Hispanic students interested in science, technology, engineering or mathematics.
For more information, contact Rebecca Teague at 951-487-3072 or or Tom Spillman at 951-487-3250 or
“Mt. San Jacinto College, a California Community College, offers accessible, innovative, comprehensive and quality educational programs and services to diverse, dynamic and growing communities both within and beyond traditional geographic boundaries. We support life-long learning and student success by utilizing proven educational methodologies as determined by collaborative institutional planning and assessment. To meet economic and workforce development needs, MSJC provides students with basic skills, general and career education that lead to transfer, associate degrees and certificates. Our commitment to student learning empowers students with the skills and knowledge needed to effect positive change and enhance the world in which we live.”