2011-2012 CACG Recipients

Family Leadership Parental Engagement Project and Family Leadership Youth Zone

Project Director: Rosemary Flores

East Valley Family Services in collaboration with Nevada State College (NSC) will implement the Family Leadership Parental Engagement Program reaching parents from five high schools and five existing Family Leadership elementary schools. The building of strong parent to school relationships will impact the lives of students in the home. In addition, students will attend the Family Leadership Youth Zone (FLY Zone) to increase college networking opportunities for teenagers of parent participants. The Family Leadership Institute (FLI Program) was developed by Educational Achievement Services (EAS) to increase parental involvement and academic achievement. The FLI is a ten (10) module program with a 60-hour curriculum teaching service leadership skills, resolving conflict and dysfunction, understanding diversity, informing about educational opportunities, understanding the educational crisis such as the drop-out rate, having the opportunity to step on college campuses, enrolling into college, working and building relationships with school personnel, developing action plans, and contributing back to society as service leaders.

Award Amount $135,000
Agency Match $135,097

Visit Family Leadership Parental Engagement Project Website


2012 CampUs Las Vegas

Project Director: Jackie Locks

In response to the drop-out crisis, the After-School All-Stars Las Vegas was part of a pilot summer camp in 2010. This residential one-week camp took place at Loyola Marymount University. The camp focused on preparing at-risk 9th graders for high school, college and careers. Due to the success of this program and anticipated success of the local CampUs Las Vegas this summer, ASASLV plans to make this an annual program in partnership with UNLV Division of Educational Outreach and with the support of the Nevada College Access Challenge Grant. With the assistance of principals and counselors, ASASLV will select students entering 9th grade at Basic HS, Canyon Springs HS, Clark HS, Rancho HS, Sierra Vista HS, and Valley HS to participate in CampUs Las Vegas, free of charge. Six successful students entering 12th grade and six successful college students will be selected to participate as mentors to provide insight on high school readiness and college awareness. Complimenting these students’ experiences will be those of the program staff, activity leaders, and guest speakers.

Award Amount $45,000
Agency Match $62,278

 News Article about CampUs


Leadership in Education for the Advancement of Diversity for Student Success (L.E.A.D.S.S.)

Project Director: Rene Cantu

The L.E.A.D.S.S. (Leadership in Education for the Advancement of Diversity for Student Success) is a community-based initiative in partnership with the Latin Chamber of Commerce Community Foundation, (a 501 (c3) nonprofit organization, the Clark County School District, and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The work will build on the history and the success of the Latin@ Youth Leadership Conference. The LYLC is now in its 18th year of operation with over 800 Latino youth having graduated from the program. The LYLC builds leadership, community, service learning, workforce development, culture, and educational awareness to encourage high educational goals. Efforts will collaborate with the CCSD office of Parental Engagement and the following high schools: Basic, Bonanza, Del Sol, Las Vegas, Rancho, Valley, Virgin Valley, and Western. The work will build learning communities focused on cultural awareness and educational excellence and inclusion. The support from the Nevada System of Higher Education will allow the LYLC to transition to the next level of reaching more low-income students and encourage them to attend college.

Award Amount $139,000
Agency Match TBA

Visit L.E.A.D.S.S. Website


Students United to Reach Goals for Education (SURGE)

Project Director: Charles Walker, Coordinator, Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows

Students United to Reach Goals for Education (SURGE) is a comprehensive college preparation program developed for the students at Hug High School. SURGE integrates effective strategies, quality resources and a network of support to give lower-income students better access to college. SURGE has four primary components that work together to create a cohesive program. First are two evidence-based programs from Boys & Girls Clubs of America: Goals for Graduation and Career Launch. These programs help students set and achieve academic goals as well as learn vital workplace skills and discover potential career paths based upon their talents and passions. The second component is mentoring, through which each participant works one-on-one with a Club staff member for guidance and accountability throughout the school year. The third component of SURGE is test preparation classes for high school proficiency exams, through which students will have access to a professional instructor during afterschool sessions. The fourth and final component of the program is college and financial aid workshops and campus tours. Through the workshops, students will learn about the college application process and how to access financial aid resources like the FAFSA. The campus tour will take students to southern Nevada to visit campuses outside their immediate area. The overarching goal of the program is to ensure that students from all socioeconomic backgrounds understand that college is as accessible to them as their peers, and that with a little hard work, they too can obtain a college education.

Award Amount $35,000
Agency Match $35,738

Visit SURGE Website


College of Southern Nevada Accelerated Associate of Business

Project Director: Dr. Clarissa Cota, Department Chair, Business Administration, CSN

CSN’s Accelerated Associate of Business Program is designed for students who have declared intent to complete the Associate of Business Degree and who have completed most of their general education degree requirements. Structured in a block format, courses will be scheduled in 4 or 8 week segments, allowing a student to complete the degree program requirements as follows: students will complete general education courses in the fall semester and then complete the accelerated four-month business specialty course work in the spring semester. Program participants will benefit from intensive advising and academic support, directed tutoring and support structures, tuition and course fees, books, and one-on-one mentoring. A complementary speaker series is an additional feature of the program. Two longer workshops and several one-hour lunchtime sessions will expose program participants to issues relevant to the program itself and their field (Economic Diversification and Job Readiness and Preparation) as well as workforce preparation topics (such as resume development, interviewing, etc.).

Award Amount $123,166
Agency Match $48,294

Visit College of Southern Nevada Website


Southern NV Career and Technical Education Pathways to Success

Project Director: Warren Hioki, Executive Director of Technical Programs and High School Partnerships

Funding from the College Access Challenge Grant Program’s GoToCollegeNevada initiative will enable CSN to partner with the Nevada Public Education Foundation (NPEF) in making college preparation a top priority for students from 12 eligible CCSD high schools. A myriad of activities will be conducted, all focusing on creating college awareness and specifically encouraging Nevada high school students to enroll in established CCSD and CSN career and technical education (CTE) Programs of Study (POS). Mandated by the Nevada Department of Education, POS are designed to link secondary to postsecondary CTE career pathways that lead to degrees and/or industry certificates. To address this statewide mandate, five major CSN Schools are included in this project: the School of (1) Advanced and Applied Technologies, (2) Business, Hospitality, and Public Services, (3) Health Sciences, (4) Science and Mathematics, and (5) Arts and Letters, with the latter two schools addressing the integration of math, science, and English into CTE POS. CSN’s Division of Apprenticeship Studies is included and CSN’s Testing Center will provide Math and English placement exam information. Through the collaborative partnership with NPEF and its affiliates, local business and industry subject matter experts (SMEs) will be strategically paired with CSN’s academic faculty in over 30 high-tech, high-salary degree and certificated CTE career programs. Together, they will present captivating information to students on career opportunities, real-world testimonials from SMEs, and engage students in career planning. Student Services will conduct a ―Parents Night Out, activity focusing on career services, financial aid, counseling, library services, student organizations, and more.

Award Amount $115,000

Agency Match $115,315.14

Visit Southern NV Career and Technical Education Website


College of Southern Nevada Accelerated Associate of Arts, Teacher

Project Director: Dr. Dale Warby, Department Chair and Professor, Department of Education, CSN

The Accelerated Teacher Education Program (ATEP) helps fill a void in Nevada’s education by helping to graduate prepared professionals on a more efficient timeline than is currently allowed. Because the grant proposes and continues to test a pilot program geared toward underrepresented populations (low income, first time to college, minority), it supports CSN’s mission of access and diversity while maintaining quality in program delivery and in graduates. Demand for quality teacher education specialists has already prompted the Dept of Education to develop an accelerated timeline. This project proposes to offer a supportive web of structures designed to assist the student through from point of entry (all coursework completed except for the last 4 courses in the program) to graduation. Through implementation of an intensive advising model, the accelerated program will provide directed and tailored support and mentoring to program participants, tuition and fee support, books, career counseling and mentoring, and the support of a learning community cohort of peer participants with structures designed to more fully engage participants. It is through this model that student success can be realized. Current faculty and staff will be leveraged to implement the program and students will take classes among other CSN students enrolled in the same program. Cohort participants in the accelerated program will benefit from the web of supportive structures that will allow them to complete their degree in a shorter period of time than they otherwise would, as determined by the application process.

Award Amount $65,000

Agency Match $23,236

Visit Accelerated Teacher Education Program Website


TMCC Success First Grant Initiative

Project Director: Patty Avila-Porter, Access Program Manager

Truckee Meadows Community College will use this grant to enhance its program, Success First, which is targeted at first generation, low income high school students. The purpose of the program is to recruit, mentor and provide support services for high school students and their families as they prepare to enter college in fall, 2012. Research indicates that students whose parents did not attend college are more likely than their non-first generation peers to be less prepared academically for college, lack adequate knowledge and resources regarding financial assistance, and tend to experience more difficulty in acclimating to college once enrolled. The motivation for first-generation students to enroll in college is a deliberate attempt to improve their social, economic, and occupational standing (Ayala and Striplen, 2002). However, these students are at greater risk for not completing a degree due to the lack of academic preparation, financial resources, and acclimating to college life and college rigor. The proposed targeted recruitment and intervention strategies will reach out to first-generation students both before and during college to mitigate the difference between them and their non-first-generation peers and help TMCC reach its goal of recruiting and retaining all students.

Award Amount $ 70,000

Agency Match $152,286

Visit TMCC Success First Website


Phase II- Preparing High School Students for College Biomedical Engineering:

Orientation and Hands-on Experiences

Program Director: Dr. Xiaoshan Zhu, Interim Director and Assistant Professor Biomedical Engineering, UNR

Biomedical engineering (BME) is one of the most rapidly growing interdisciplinary engineering disciplines. A college degree in BME instantly identifies candidates as having training in both engineering and life science, and strengthens their competency in job markets. Upon the outcomes and experience gained in the last project phase, the objective of this phase is to interest more high school students in college BME education with improved project activities. These activities include: (1) teaching expertise training of high school teachers; (2) integrated lab tours and seminars; and (3) summer camp providing both hands-on experience and interaction with college students and company engineers. The integrated lab tours and seminars will enhance the understanding of students on the BME discipline. The understanding includes BME R&D, the rapid increase of college BME education, college application processes, the BME job market perspective and sustainability, etc. The summer camp will seed scientific interests to students through hands-on experience, and will provide students opportunities to learn the importance of college education on career development through interacting with college students and company engineers. In order to measure and direct the success of the project, evaluation on the implementation of each project activity will be conducted. The project results will be disseminated through public media and conference or journal publications.

Award Amount: $ 45,000

Agency Match: $ 45,000

Visit UNR biomedical engineering Website


College Preparation and Support for Underserved Students

Program Director: Ralph E. Reynolds

The current project will provide two college preparation courses and a summer campus experience to underrepresented students from five area high schools. A College Readiness course will be taught fall 2011. Sample content will include such topics as: negotiating family and school, effective learning and study skills, negotiating classroom participation, effective research skills, and completing an academic/life plan. A College Competency course will be taught spring 2012. Sample content will include such topics as: advantages of college for life, college expectations, myths about intelligence and academic success, performing under pressure, self efficacy, stress prevention and management, basic computer literacy, advanced study strategies, text comprehension strategies, writing for college, and challenges faced by minority students in college. One major goal of the class is to establish student support and working groups that students can carry forward to the next level. The summer session will be held in summer 2012. The session will focus on connecting these students with college student associates from the local universities and colleges (particularly other underrepresented students). In addition, students will meet with professors in their areas of interest in such disciplines as: Engineering, Theatre, Music, Nursing, Education, Law, Technology, Social Sciences and Sciences. Other select university experiences will be provided as well (e.g., visiting the Moot Court, Mechanical Engineering lab, Psychology Eye Movement Laboratories, etc.). Parents will be involved throughout these activities as they are vital to the success of the students in the program.

Award Amount: 49,526

Agency Match: $49,858

Visit College Preparation and Support for Underserved Students Website


From Macro to Micro/Nano: Career Planning for High School Students toward a Brighter Future in Biomedical Engineering, Renewable Energy, and Microelectronics

Program Director: Hui Zhao

Micro/Nanotechnology which covers a variety of subjects including chemistry, physics, material, engineering, and biology has the potential to drastically improve electronics, medicine, energy harvesting/storage, and beyond. As faculty working in these fast growing areas, we feel that high school students, especially those from Clark County School District, should be provided an opportunity to learn the basics, academic requirement and job prospect of micro/nano technologies and their applications, at the time when they are considering to go to college. Such knowledge shall help the students make an informed decision to pursue relevant college degrees in engineering or science which lead to rewarding careers that are beneficial to the students individually and to the state of Nevada in its pursuit of diversified economy. To broaden interests of high school students to attend colleges, we propose to develop a community outreach program that involves four major activities: (1) training high school science teachers to acquire relevant knowledge; (2) hosting lab tours and workshops at either participating high school campuses or at UNLV main campus; (3) organizing a summer camp for high school students; and (4) creating and regularly updating an interactive website that connects university educators and high school students. Prompt interactions among high school students and the faculty will help attract more students to pursue advanced degrees.

Award Amount: $45,000

Agency Match: $45,000

Visit UNR’s Website


Dean’s Future Scholars: A Research-Based, Relational Approach to Graduate High School and Enroll in College

We assist at-risk, low-income, underserved students from Hugh High School, North Valleys High School, and Pyramid Lake High School and provide weekly academic year mentoring and tutoring services for these students. We also propose and extensive, academic summer program that focuses on earning High School math credit or earning college credits. Our program will increase the numbers of underserved students graduating high school and entering a Nevada System of Higher Education institution. Mentoring and tutoring services will be provided by trained, local, low-income UNR students who will travel to local high schools and meet each week with the targeted students. These UNR students will build relationships with the students while assisting the high school students to set and achieve academic goals. High school students will be encouraged to build positive relationships with their teachers and counselors.  The parents of these students will be invited to the UNR campus to meet with neighborhood college students who will offer successful strategies for the parents to encourage their children to graduate high school and college. During the summer, these high school students will register for a WCSD summer school math course for credit. The summer math classes will be held on the UNR campus. UNR students will tutor the high school students during the summer math program. High school students who have completed the WCSD math requirement will enroll in 6 UNR summer school credits and be hired as a paid, on-campus intern during the summer. UNR students will mentor and tutor these high school students during the summer to ensure a successful experience.

Amount Awarded: $55,000

Amount Matched:  $55,000

Visit the UNR Website