E-town pledges commitment to educate more high-achieving, low-income students
December 7, 2017   //   By:   //   E-town in the News, Features

Along with Yale University, Wake Forest University, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Washington and Georgia Institute of Technology, Elizabethtown College announces a public commitment to educate more high-achieving, low-income students through the American Talent Initiative (ATI), an enterprise of Bloomberg Philanthropies.

These six institutions aim to improve socioeconomic diversity by identifying talented students through better recruitment efforts, reaching out directly to the neediest families nationwide, removing cost as a barrier to access by increasing need-based aid to make attendance more affordable and retaining and graduating lower-income students at rates comparable to their higher-income peers.

E-town’s immediate goal is to increase the number of transfer students by 400 percent, bringing the figure from 25 in 2017 to 100 by 2021.

“Elizabethtown College is proud to build on its long history of giving students from all backgrounds the opportunity to succeed in college and in their careers,” said College President Carl Strikwerda. “As part of our partnership with ATI we will increase our recruitment of community college students who transfer to the College and graduate with degrees.”

E-town offers a 13:1 student faculty ratio in more than 150 majors, minors and concentrations. Ninety-seven percent of students receive financial aid and 80 percent are awarded merit scholarships.

Started in December 2016, ATI, which has grown its membership from 30 to 86 colleges and universities in under a year, works with institutions across the country that graduate at least 70 percent of their students in six years.

As one of those colleges, Elizabethtown pledges to support these students socially, academically and financially, from before they arrive on campus until graduation and beyond.

“America is the world’s greatest meritocracy, but too often a parent’s income still determines a child’s likelihood of attending a great college,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and three-term Mayor of New York City. “The American Talent Initiative is aimed at fixing that, and the program’s momentum is building: More top schools are committing to enrolling more talented students from lower-income families and drawing up concrete action plans to make that happen. Their leadership sets a great example for others.”

David Leonhardt with the New York Times released a story on the initiative this morning. Comment from Elizabethtown College was included in the story.

About the Author :

E.A. (Elizabeth) Harvey is the communications manager and news editor at Elizabethtown College. She has worked in the Office of Marketing and Communications since 2008, after more than two decades as a newspaper feature writer. She holds a bachelor's degree in corporate communication from Elizabethtown College.