Last September, staff members from the Woodward Hines Education Foundation had their work and research featured in The Foundation Review, the first peer-reviewed journal of philanthropy. The publication is written by and for foundation staff and boards, and those who work with them implementing programs. It provides rigorous research and writing, presented in an accessible style.
You can read the September 2020 issue here.
Executive summaries of WHEF's featured articles are below.
Scaling Rural Access: One Foundation’s Partnership to Expand FAFSA Completion Across Mississippi (Page 7)
B. Tait Kellogg, Ph.D., Higher Ed Insight; Ann Hendrick, M.S., and Kierstan Dufour, M.S., Woodward Hines Education Foundation; and Patricia Steele, Ph.D., Higher Ed Insight
In rural states, under-resourced groups are sometimes left behind when quantitative scaling strategies involve a more cost-effective focus on areas with a concentrated population. This article discusses Get2College, a model by the Woodward Hines Education Foundation to provide financial aid counseling to Mississippi high school students, and a study that assessed efforts to increase the number of students who complete the FAFSA. Get2College’s approach to scaling involved a partnership with the state’s rurally based community colleges and leveraged their established support networks to expand its outreach to the state’s often underserved students and raise FAFSA completion rates among that population. As foundations seek to support nonprofits with scaling their initiatives, a key question to consider when choosing an approach should always be: Who might be excluded?
Emergent Learning: Increasing the Impact of Foundation-Driven Strategies to Support College Enrollment and Completion (Page 60)
Kimberly Hanauer, M.A., UnlockED; Stacy Sneed, B.A., Woodward Hines Education Foundation; and Bill DeBaun, M.P.P., National College Attainment Network
While the workforce requires a greater level of education to earn a family-sustaining wage, Americans in the lowest income quartile have achieved only incremental increases in postsecondary completion. This article examines lessons learned as part of the continued development of the Get2College Pilot School Program, an initiative of the Woodward Hines Education Foundation designed to test a strategy for increasing college enrollment among Mississippi students through greater college exploration opportunities and application and financial aid supports. Four major lessons include: Begin with a commitment to engagement between school districts and school administrators; create a “college team” at each school to embed support for enrollment and completion; build a strong theory of change and evaluation method; and customize support strategies to regional contexts and individual schools.