Higher-education officials will have to seek new avenues for funding and seed money for online programs after the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation announced this week that its online-education grant program will end this year.

The Sloan Foundation, based in New York City, started the grant program in 1992, years before the internet was used for expanding distance-education programs at colleges and universities. The program has doled out more than $80 million over 17 years.

Frank Mayadas, the founder of Sloan's online-education grant initiative and an online education pioneer, said the country's economic downturn was not the reason the foundation ended its grant


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