August 30, 2015
New KCP grant expands educational support for students

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

In her role as a tutor, LaTasha Watkins of the Scholars Program explains the function of ultracapacitors to other Lawrence Tech students.

Lawrence Technological University has a won state grant of $780,000 over six years that will provide individual support for hundreds of students and strengthen academic programs that impact the entire student population 

Lawrence Tech will receive $130,000 a year through the State of Michigan’s King Chavez Parks (KCP) Initiative that specifically targets students who are financially or academically at risk, non-traditional or first-generation, or from traditionally underserved populations. The program is named in honor of civil rights pioneers Martin Luther King, Jr., Cesar Chavez, and Rosa Parks.

Most of the funding comes from federal sources and is administered by the Division of Lifelong Learning of the Michigan Strategic Fund. This summer Lawrence Tech won a six-year extension to the state-administered grant that it has participated in since 1999.

“KCP programs target students who are financially and academically at risk, but they benefit  almost all of our students and help level the academic playing field,” said Senior Lecturer Holly Helterhoff who is the KCP program director at Lawrence Tech.

The new grant will expand the centerpiece of Lawrence Tech’s KCP grant, the Scholars Program, which each year brings together about 40 students to provide a support group for each other while also contributing to campus life and the academic community.

The new five-year grant introduces several new programs:

  • Operation: MACRO (Math Achievement: A Culture of Relevance & Ownership), which combines drilled-based learning and discipline with creativity and practical applications. Students will learn how to take charge of their own math education.
  • Operation: Science, which is designed to support students in gateway science courses utilizing the peer-driven supplemental instruction model developed at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
  • Operation: CultureShock!, which introduces at-risk students to the active-collaborative and problem-based learning models necessary for success in science, technology, engineering and  math (STEM) courses.
  • Operation: Internship, which connects at-risk students with internship opportunities early in their college careers and promotes the “soft skills” needed to flourish in the workplace.
  • Operation: FLEX (Financial Literacy Education eXchange), which provides personal finance literacy education and mentoring.
  • Operation: Enhanced Clinical Counseling, which helps students work with learning and emotional disabilities.

In addition, Lawrence Tech will develop partnerships with two existing KCP programs at other universities:

  • GEAR-UP/College Day Program at Oakland University, which helps middle school and high school students prepare for college.
  • Future Faculty Fellows Program at Wayne State University, which provides support to graduate students who will teach at-risk students in the future.

Dean of Students Kevin Finn is the primary investigator for the KCP grant and Dean of Arts and Sciences Hsiao-Ping Moore is the co-primary investigator. Eula Muckleroy is the program coordinator.

The grant was developed with collaboration from Professor David Bindschadler, chair of the Department of Math and Computer Science; Senior Lecturer Bashkim Zendeli, director of the developmental mathematics program; Assistant Professor Guang-Chong Zhu; Gladys Aviles, director of the Academic Achievement Center; and Peg Pierce, director of the Office of Career Services.

Associate Professor CJ Chung and Professor Anthony Sky will participate in GEAR-UP partnership.



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Eric Pope, Editor
Marketing and Public Affairs
Buell Building M376