Undergraduate Academic Affairs

May 6, 2014

UW Dream Project is awarded a $150,000 College Spark Washington Community Grant

Undergraduate Academic Affairs

Picture of Dream Project mentor helping high school student

A Dream Project mentor helps a high school student with her college application materials.

SEATTLE—The Dream Project at the University of Washington has been awarded a three-year, $150,000 College Spark Washington Community Grant today to enhance its current work by improving its curriculum, materials and training of mentors; and improvements to its data management system to better inform efforts to help students avoid remediation.

The annual, competitive statewide Community Grants Program focuses on building the effectiveness of grantees working with low-income students in middle, high school and college by funding new and promising practices that help students be college-ready and transition successfully to college.

“This grant will allow us to create and implement new curriculum and programming to support 300 more high school students in earning college-level math and/or English credits each year and 300 more students in placing out of developmental education (into college-level coursework) when they enroll in postsecondary education,” said Jenée Myers Twitchell, director at the University of Washington Dream Project. “In turn, these changes will dramatically increase the likelihood of those students earning postsecondary degrees.”

This year’s 12 grantees will measure results using at least one of the four following indicators of future college success:

  • 8th Grade Algebra: Increasing the number of students who take and pass algebra by the eighth grade.
  • Early Warning Indicators: Decreasing the number of middle school students who trigger two of three early warning indicators: five or more absences per semester; course failure; suspension or expulsion.
  • Remedial Education: Decreasing the number of students who require remedial education in college.
  • College Math and English: Increasing the number of students who earn their first college-level credit in English or math.

“We are supporting organizations across the state working hard and making progress on postsecondary access, persistence and completion rates for low-income students,” said Christine McCabe, Executive Director at College Spark Washington. “These grantees will be tracking their results and sharing what works.”

Since 2005 College Spark Washington’s Community Grants Program has awarded more than 100 Community Grants totaling $14 million.

To see a full list and descriptions of grantees visit the 2014 Community Grantees web page.

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 About the UW Dream Project

The Dream Project at the University of Washington assists low-income and first-generation high school students in attaining higher education and raises awareness among university students about the issues of educational opportunity and social mobility. Founded in 2005 by UW undergraduates, the Dream Project is led and run by students supported by UW staff. At any given time, 80 student leaders run all facets of the program, and 450 mentors per quarter help high school students gain college admission. Annually, the Dream Project supports 1,800 high school students in 17 partner high schools in seven school districts in South King County and Seattle. In 11 of the high schools, the Dream Project works with every junior and senior in the school. In the other six high schools, the project actively seeks out students whose indicators predict they are less likely to go to college. The Dream Project is housed within Undergraduate Academic Affairs at the UW.

About College Spark Washington

College Spark Washington funds programs across Washington state that help low-income students become college-ready and earn their degrees. Grantees include community-based organizations, K-12 schools and districts, community and technical colleges, four-year colleges and universities, educational nonprofits, and public agencies. College Spark began supporting access to higher education in 1978 and, since 2005, has awarded more than $38 million to college readiness and degree completion programs throughout the state.