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The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Awards Northern Virginia Community College’s Pathway to the Baccalaureate Program with a Continued Support Grant of $150,000

Annandale, VA, Sept. 18, 2019 – Today, Northern Virginia Community College is pleased to announce that the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation has chosen to grant the institution the amount of $150,000 towards the college’s ‘Pathway to the Baccalaureate’ Program for high-achieving students who have financial needs.

This program support from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation will further expand the college’s access and retention services to more than 500 students in Loudoun County per year and will award 60 Pathway scholarships to high-ability, low-income students. This will facilitate successful college transition, retention and completion of high-achieving students with financial need in the Pathway to the Baccalaureate Program at NOVA, through a combination of high impact practices, holistic student development, academic advising and student success programs, services and scholarships.

Through a coordinated network of services, NOVA’s ‘Pathway’ program offers high-touch wraparound services beginning in the senior year of high school through associate’s degree completion at NOVA, as well as transfer admission guidance to students pursuing bachelor’s degrees at four-year institutions. The Foundation’s funding will support staff time and scholarships for high-achieving students who have financial need.

Dr. Frances Villagran-Glover, Vice President of Student Services here at NOVA states that the pinnacle of effectiveness for the program is due to that, “the key tenets of the ‘Pathway to the Baccalaureate’ program is our holistic, wraparound student support services. This award will help our students stay in college and will aid in removing many of the barriers that prevent them from being successful. We are excited about the many opportunities for student success”.

Foundation research demonstrates that high-achieving students with financial need are less likely than their higher-income peers to continue performing in the top academic quartile. These excellence gaps persist and, in many cases, widen as students continue through their K-12 years. Additionally, Foundation research on postsecondary performance found that community college students who transfer to selective institutions are more likely to graduate than their peers who started as freshman at those same institutions.

NOVA is one of the recipients in the Foundation’s announcement today of $565,500 in new grant funding to educational organizations dedicated to closing excellence gaps and supporting college access for high-achieving students with financial need in the Northern Virginia region. The cumulative grants will enable over 1,400 students to access programs focused on providing high-quality academic experiences and college success initiatives. Other grantees were George Mason University, Loudoun County Public Schools, and the Community Foundation for Loudoun and Northern Fauquier Counties.

Prior, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation has awarded multiple students from NOVA on an annual basis with the opportunity for success at furthering their education. The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship, a competitive and extremely prestigious scholarship, has been awarded to at least one NOVA student every year. A recent student who reached national acclaim; Taima Al-Iriani was granted $40,000 in an annual scholarship to complete her degree shortly after gaining political asylum in the United States.

For more information, please contact, Dr. Angela L. Williams, Executive Director, Pathway to the Baccalaureate at Northern Virginia Community College at awilliams@nvcc.edu.


The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Since 2000, the Foundation has awarded over $200 million in scholarships to over 2,600 students from 8th grade through graduate school, along with comprehensive educational advising and other support services. The Foundation has also provided $110 million in grants to organizations that serve such students.

Jack Kent Cooke Foundation logo

Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) is the largest public institution of higher learning in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls nearly 80,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield (Medical Education Campus) and Woodbridge, through NOVA Online and high school dual enrollment. We offer more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs to help our students reach their academic and professional goals through university transfers and access to the most in-demand careers. At NOVA, we strive to ensure that every student succeeds, every program achieves and every community prospers. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, visit our website, www.nvcc.eduor call 703.323.3000.