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M State gets $2.25 million grant

Minnesota State Community and Technical College has been awarded a five-year $2.25 million U.S. Department of Education Title III grant, the largest federal grant in the college’s history.

M State is one of 39 institutions in the nation and the only one in Minnesota to receive 2013 grant funds under the department’s Strengthening Institutions Program. The competitive SIP grants are designed to expand the capacity of colleges and universities to serve low-income students by improving academic quality, institutional management and fiscal stability.

;“M State is honored to receive this grant, which will benefit our continuing efforts to support students and our communities in substantial ways,” said M State President Peggy Kennedy.  “This funding from the Department of Education will allow us to further our efforts to enhance our curriculum and student services, improve student success and aid the college in accomplishing its strategic goals.”

Kennedy recognized Chief Academic Officer Kathy Brock, Associate Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs Carrie Brimhall and Senior Dean Jill Abbott, who developed M State’s grant proposal.

Funding will allow M State to create immersive technology classrooms on each of its four campuses, increase student success and persistence among online and developmental students through faculty development, design and enhance student support initiatives and increase the college’s capacity for data-driven decisions.

Brimhall will serve as project director for the grant, and M State Chief Information Officer Dan Knudson and Abbott will serve as grant activity directors. The college’s first-year award in 2013-14 is $450,000.

“As the college faces funding declines and increased accountability for student completion, the SIP grant announcement comes at an opportune time for M State,” Brimhall said. “Every day, our teaching, learning and serving efforts are focused on success for every one of our students. The grant dollars will increase our capacity to effectively and efficiently teach and serve the stakeholders and students in our region.”

As a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, M State serves more than 9,000 students in credit courses each year in more than 70 career and liberal arts programs at its four campuses in Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Moorhead and Wadena, and through eCampus. By partnering with communities, the college also provides custom training services and other responsive training programs.