The Greater Texas Foundation (GTF) has awarded Project MALES a grant for $335,314 to support Hispanic and African American male student success in college enrollment and degree attainment. Project MALES is an initiative within the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.
The grant will be awarded over a three-year period starting in summer 2013 to support the Texas Higher Education Consortium for Male Student Success, an ambitious statewide initiative that will align existing programs that target underrepresented male students in higher education and stimulates new initiatives within Texas colleges and universities.
“Data on educational attainment show that Hispanic and African American male students are not faring as well as their peers in college matriculation and graduation rates,” said Victor Sáenz, assistant professor of education and Project MALES director. “With the support of GTF, the consortium members will collaborate, share best practices, and leverage their resources and expertise to support male student success at their respective campuses across the state.”
The consortium will be led by Sáenz, and it will officially be an initiative of Project MALES at the university. Its inaugural members are Austin Community College, El Paso Community College District, Lone Star College System, Palo Alto College, San Antonio College, South Texas College, Tarrant County College District, Texas State University and the University of North Texas.
“This consortium is an initiative that directly aligns to the mission of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin,” said Gregory J. Vincent, vice president for diversity and community engagement. “This collaborative statewide effort is serving a need to close the achievement gap prevalent across our state by ensuring that men of color get the assistance and mentorship they need to be successful in college so that they increase their participation at every educational level.”
The three-year grant will support work on four key objectives: to build the consortium; to annually hold two meetings and a student summit to share evaluation metrics and advance programmatic activities; to incubate research-based, male-focused programs, including a male mentoring program for high school and college students at each institution; and to disseminate findings through a resource center and other online tools. The research-based mentoring program for male high school and college students is based on a multigenerational mentoring model designed and piloted by Sáenz and his Project MALES team.
Additional funding for the consortium will come in the form of in-kind and direct support from the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement as well as other funding partners. To learn more about the consortium or Project MALES, visit http://ddce.utexas.edu/projectmales/about/.
The Greater Texas Foundation, formerly the Greater Texas Student Loan Corporation, is a foundation based in Bryan, Texas, that serves the residents and educational institutions of Texas by supporting initiatives that increase rates of postsecondary enrollment and completion for all Texas students, with a particular focus on students who may encounter barriers to postsecondary success.