Record Grant Funds Enhance Wake Tech Programs
October 1st, 2013
RALEIGH, N.C. (October 1, 2013) - Wake Tech Community College was awarded more than $4.4 million in grant funds in 2012-13 – a record high for the college and a 22% increase over the previous fiscal year. Educational institutions often rely on grant awards to expand their programs and services beyond the constraints of regular operating budgets.
“Grant funds are enormously important to an innovative, future-forward agenda,” says Wake Tech President Dr. Stephen C. Scott. “They help us give life to great ideas and keep up with the changing technologies and instructional approaches that make higher education dynamic and effective.”
Noteworthy among Wake Tech’s 2012-13 grants is a $2.95 million award from the U.S. Department of Labor for the creation of a two-year degree program in business analytics – the nation’s first. The program is aimed at filling a critical national need for workers with training in the burgeoning field of analytics and data management. The grant project also includes the creation of new certificate programs in analytics and training to support existing SAS and IBM certifications.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for Completion by Design awarded Wake Tech $821,292 to help increase completion and graduation rates among low-income students. The program will also focus on holding down costs and maintaining overall quality and accessibility.
The Gates Foundation also provided $50,000 for the creation of a Massive Open Online Course, or MOOC, in developmental mathematics – another national first for a community college. The MOOC provides high-demand, high impact courses to people anywhere in the world, inviting large-scale participation and open access via the internet. Students navigate course material at their own pace and complete self-assessments to monitor progress.
A $58,081 grant from the North Carolina Biotechnology Center will allow Wake Tech to enhance student learning in microbiology courses with improved curriculum and laboratory modules. The improvements align with guidelines of the American Society for Microbiology; the project will have a direct impact on more than 500 students over the next three years.
Other grant-funded projects being launched at Wake Tech will enhance astronomy courses through the use of remote-controlled telescopes in Chile, Australia, and West Virginia; provide calculators for the blind; and educate students, faculty, and staff on alternative transportation as a way to reduce the carbon footprint of the college.