The Maricopa County Community College District Foundation was awarded a $3 million grant from Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust for the period from March 2017 to March 2020. The grant will fund the Achieving a College Education Program (ACE), a nationally recognized program that helps at-risk students transition from high school to community college completion and on to a four-year postsecondary institution.
Phoenix College is among the campuses that will expand its ACE program through the grant.
ACE serves nearly 2,000 students each year. Students who participate in the program begin taking courses between their high school sophomore and junior years, continuing until their graduation. ACE students may earn up to 24 transferable college credits while in the program. In 2015, 92 percent of ACE students graduated from high school on time.
The grant will fund 600 additional scholarships for students to participate in ACE and expand support activities including connecting students to STEM pathways and careers, providing mentor support, and enhancing student success interventions.