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Funding Available to Address Gaps in Postsecondary Attainment



Proposals sought for Equity in Attainment and Job Connection Grant program

Contact: Sandy Connolly, Director of Communications
Office of Higher Education
(651) 259-3902

St. Paul, MN -- Funding for efforts to help more students of color complete a postsecondary education and find a job is now available under legislation signed into law last year by Governor Mark Dayton.

Proposals for the Equity in Attainment and Job Connection Grant Program are being accepted by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education (OHE). Just under $500,000 is available to fund awards to Minnesota state colleges and universities and private organization programs. Funding proposals must focus on improving postsecondary success and employment outcomes for students historically underrepresented in higher education.

"Minnesota remains one of the most highly educated states in the country, but deep disparities exist in attainment between White students and students of color," said Commissioner Larry Pogemiller, OHE. "These grants will be awarded to those schools or organizations that focus on best-practice strategies proven to increase attendance, retention and graduation rates, as well as improving implement outcomes, for underrepresented students."

In 2015, Governor Dayton and the Minnesota Legislature enacted legislation setting a target that 70 percent of Minnesota adults age 25 to 44 will have attained a postsecondary certificate or degree by 2025. According to data collected by OHE and the State Demographer's office, attainment rates for White and Asian students are over 60%, while rates for Black students are at 35%, Hispanic students are at 24%, and the attainment rate for American Indian students is 22%.

The request for proposals is available here.

The grants will be awarded to institutions and organizations that provide a service under, but not limited to, the following categories:

  • Social and Campus Integration
  • Services that Promote Long-Term Academic Success
  • Appropriately structured developmental education
  • Expanding paid internships that directly relate to degree programs

Prospective applicants with questions regarding this request for application should contact:

Shaun Williams-Wyche, Ph.D.
Program Manager
Minnesota Office of Higher Education

For more information, contact Sandy Connolly at 651-259-3902 or by email at

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