COLUMBUS, Ohio — The University of Mount Union is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a $275,625 Choose Ohio First (COF) grant to support students in the critical fields of science (including health professions), technology, engineering, mathematics, and manufacturing (STEM+M).
The grant, approved by the state Controlling Board on April 5, is part of the largest number of institutional grantees in COF history. Mount Union’s grant will be awarded over the course of the next five years.
Mount Union’s project, entitled “Enhancing Inclusivity in STEMM by Leveraging University Partnerships,” will provide aid to students in the form of gap scholarships in STEM+M disciplines across the University. These scholarships are renewable for four years, and five cohorts of students will be funded. In addition to scholarships, Mount Union has commitments from regional businesses and industries to provide high-impact experiences (internships or research opportunities) to COF recipients.
This grant will prioritize student recruitment at Akron North High School, which was established as a Sister School of Mount Union in 2020. In 2019, only 14% of North graduates matriculated to four-year colleges or universities, and in 2020, that number dropped to just 2%.
Akron North’s Career and College Academies in Health, Global Business and Technology align well with Mount Union’s STEM+M majors, and North’s established partnerships with local businesses and industries such as Goodyear, the Cleveland Clinic and S3 Technologies will provide scholarship recipients with internship and research opportunities aimed at attracting them to remain in the region.
Any scholarships not awarded to North graduates will be utilized for Alliance area students with demonstrated sociodemographic disadvantages.
“Dr. Dwyer will provide an invaluable layer of mentoring and career counseling for our COF scholars,” said Dr. Sandra Madar, Founding Dean of the College of Natural and Health Sciences. “We could not be more excited to welcome Akron North’s highly motivated and focused students to campus this fall as we launch into our new partnership. We are very thankful of the State’s ongoing support of this highly effective defense against brain drain.”