The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will announce a $35 million competitive grant program during the White House’s first Community College Summit, and two major banks will join philanthropic groups to kick off a $1 million prize for officials from education, business, and public service who lead reform efforts.
The first-ever White House Summit on Community Colleges, hosted by longtime educator and Second Lady Jill Biden, will bring together leaders from education and labor to discuss how two-year schools can help train workers and boost the struggling economy, according to a White House announcement.
The Gates Foundation will continue its giving to educational causes with a grant program targeting groups of community colleges with low-income students in nine states.
The program, called Completion by Design, will be available to colleges in North Carolina, New York, Florida, Georgia, Ohio, California, Arizona, Texas, and Washington.
Charitable branches of JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America will join philanthropic organizations the Aspen Institute and the Joyce and Lumina Foundations to award an annual $1 million prize to educational leaders who “[accelerate] the spread of successful practices” and improve community college completion rates.
The award is not limited to those in education, according to an Oct. 5 announcement. Public officials and business leaders also will be eligible.
The Community College Summit comes a day after President Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board announced its Skills for America’s Future program, which aims to connect businesses with community colleges to help better match workers with jobs during the economic recovery and beyond.