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Oregon Health Career Center awarded $55,997 grant to increase college access

Contact: Di Saunders, OUS – Office: 503-725-5714; Cell: 971-219-6869
Source: Stephanie Carnahan, CACGP Program Director – Office: 541-346-5761; Cell: 541-359-6755

Portland, OR, November 3, 2010 – The State of Oregon recently announced that it has awarded a $55,997 grant to Oregon Health Career Center’s Health Careers College Success Program Expansion project to increase college readiness for participating students. Funded through a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education received by Oregon in August, Oregon Health Career Center’s award is part of the College Access Challenge Grant Program (CACGP) which awarded grants to 12 pre-college preparation programs across the state for a total of $607,000 in support.

Oregon Health Career Center’s Health Careers College Success Program Expansion project will be implemented at two additional high schools in Multnomah County, with the goal of increasing program capacity to provide school-year and summer programs that provide pre-college academic and other enrichment to ensure students are ready for college and to pursue health careers. To achieve this goal, the project will engage students in study skills learning, financial and other advising, cultural competency learning, college field trips and advising, rigorous college-level math and science coursework, and additional pre-college preparation activities.

Gary Wappes, Oregon Health Career Center president and CEO, said, “We are extremely thankful for CACGP’s support to extend our Health Careers College Success Program to a greater number of students in our region. Students served by our program have a track record of success.  One hundred percent of our students graduate from high school and at least 95% go on to college. CACGP’s investment builds our capacity to provide students in our region with the resources and tools necessary to succeed in their dream of going to college.”

In addition to current partners including Jefferson High School, North Salem High School, Woodburn High School, Gervais High School, and Forest Grove High School, the Oregon Health Career Center will add David Douglas High School and Franklin High School. Besides the $55,997 provided by the grant, Oregon Health Career Center will be providing an additional $56,323 in matching funds to run the program.

Stephanie Carnahan, director of college access programs for the Oregon University System, said, “There is a great need in Oregon for pre-college programs that help students and families understand how to access college in a comprehensive way, from academic preparation to understanding how financial aid works. Health Careers College Success is a great example of the type of support that all Oregon students need in order to ensure that they can access college and be academically and otherwise prepared to succeed in their education and career goals.”

The College Access Challenge Grant Program (CACGP) is a formula grant program that is designed to foster partnerships among Federal, State and local government entities and philanthropic organizations to significantly increase the number of underrepresented students who enter and remain in postsecondary education. CACGP provides two-year grants to States to meet the needs of underrepresented students and families. In Oregon, all education sectors and the Governor’s Office are involved in the CACGP, and the Oregon University System is the fiscal agent for the grant.

Oregon University System (OUS) comprises seven distinguished public universities and one branch campus, reaching more than one million people each year through on-campus classes, statewide public services, and lifelong learning. The Oregon State Board of Higher Education, the statutory governing board of OUS, is composed of twelve members appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Oregon State Senate. For additional information, go to www.ous.edu.

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