Growing Inland Achievement (GIA) is pleased to announce receipt of a grant in the amount of $1,318,000 from College Futures Foundation to support GIA core capacity building as well as a Transfer GPS resource to aid student transitions from community colleges to four-year universities.
“College Futures Foundation is a long-standing supporter of the Inland Empire community, including a grant in October of 2020 to support regional Guided Pathways efforts which provide students a clearer path to graduation,” said Dr. Carlos Ayala, President & CEO at GIA. “We are extremely grateful for their ongoing commitment to preserve and improve educational opportunities and the quality of life for our residents. This added support from the Foundation allows us to continue our work at GIA while focusing on critical areas of student needs such as transfer from our regional community colleges to four-year institutions.”
Approximately two-thirds of grant funding will support GIA in capacity building, including staff and operational infrastructure. “Our staff plays a key role in facilitating connections between organizations and across sectors, throughout the vast bi-county region of San Bernardino and Riverside counties. These connections lead to increased collaboration, partnerships, and collective impact efforts to achieve regional goals and a shared vision of success for the Inland Empire,” said Ann Marie Sakrekoff, COO at GIA. “In addition, GIA staff provide critical research and data support, and help to identify and generate funding and in-kind resources to support efforts to increase regional educational attainment in the region.”
The remainder of the grant funds will be utilized to pilot a data analytics-based project called Transfer GPS, in partnership with the John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education. The Transfer GPS tool and networked improvement community will help address transfer and equity gap issues by providing broader access to and support for a sophisticated set of analytical tools that help educational institutions quickly acquire and scale their ability to analyze and facilitate student academic progress and completion.
“Transfer GPS will complement existing regional transfer initiatives and tools, such as Bakersfield College’s Program Pathways Mapper, to inform decisions around college transfer and ultimately help students to plan out the most efficient path to completion or transfer, and reduce unnecessary classes and expenses,” said Ayala. “The Transfer GPS project will deepen our knowledge about how to support and accelerate college transfer in the region, and we are very excited to work with the Gardner Institute alongside our regional colleges to roll out this initiative.”