Walmart Foundation Awards $3 Million to Alliance for Equity; Supports Next Generation of College Students
Washington, D.C., Sept. 13, 2010 –Today the Walmart Foundation announced a $3 million grant to the members of the Alliance for Equity in Higher Education to increase college success rates at Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs). The grant benefits higher education institutions serving a large number of first-generation college students.
Funding will support the identification of campus support strategies that have a positive impact on first-generation students success, and then replicate those initiatives throughout the network of MSI institutions in the Alliance.
“Supporting education initiatives is a priority for Walmart because we see it as an investment in the next generation. Students today are the leaders of tomorrow,” said Margaret McKenna, president of the Walmart Foundation. “Supporting the Alliance and their member institutions will help ensure first-generation college students receive the vital support and guidance they need to graduate.”
The Alliance for Equity in Higher Education is made up of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC), the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) and the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO), which serves Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The Alliance was established in 1999 and currently represents more than 600 MSI campuses.
Leadership at the Alliance, including Carrie Billy, president of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium; Antonio Flores, president of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities and Lezli Baskerville, president & CEO of the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education, agree that programs supporting students at MSIs are vital to ensuring the next generation of college students graduate in record numbers and are prepared to contribute to society as professional and civic leaders.
Walmart and the Walmart Foundation support educational opportunities that promote youth success. In 2009, Walmart and its Foundation gave more than $53 million to fund educational programs in communities across the country, including programs that support teachers, Veterans’ education and adolescent literacy, to name a few.