RGC Receives $2.8 Million Grant

By Laura Nelson

Sul Ross State University Rio Grande College recently received confirmation that the U.S. Department of Education will fund a five-year "Promoting PostBaccalauerate Opportunities for Hispanic Americans" (PPOHA) grant worth a total of $2,874,635 that will be used to expand post-baccalaureate studies in the 13-county region of south Texas that it serves.

The grant will increase educational opportunities for Hispanic students and improve their academic attainment beyond a bachelor's degree. It will also expand the academic offerings and enhance the program quality in institutions of higher education that educate the majority of Hispanic college students and helping both Hispanic and low-income students complete postsecondary degrees.

RGC will focus on three specific areas. First, new degree options within the existing Master's of Education will be developed to address the increasing need for teachers with graduate degrees in public schools. The second activity will expand RGC's Graduate Student Support Center to provide writing assistance, research resources, and academic and professional development seminars. The third part offers a minimum of 285 scholarships over the period of the grant to assist low income graduate students. Recipients will be required to maintain a minimum grade point average as well as a minimum credit hour enrollment that will encourage students to continue progress in their chosen degree program.

Rio Grande College is the only institution in its 13-county area that offers graduate degrees and the need for individuals with those degrees, especially in education, continues to increase. The RGC PPOHA grant will benefit students by offering more graduate degree options, academic and personal support, and financial assistance.