Tribal Colleges Education Equity Grants

 

This grants program is designed to promote and strengthen higher education instruction in the food and agricultural sciences at the 34 Tribal Colleges designated as 1994 Land-Grant Institutions in the Equity in Educational Land-Grant Status Act of 1994, as amended. Plans of Work should focus on undergraduate and/or graduate studies in the food and agricultural sciences in one or more of the following areas: Curricula Design and Materials Development, Faculty Development and Preparation for Teaching, Instruction Delivery Systems, Student Experiential Learning, Equipment and Instrumentation for Teaching, or Student Recruitment and Retention.

The purpose of the TCEG Program is to provide funding to enhance educational opportunities for Native Americans in the food and agricultural sciences. The TCEG program is intended to strengthen institutional capacity to deliver relevant formal education opportunities. The TCEG is intended to be a component of the applicant 1994 institution’s land grant roadmap or strategic planning process. To the extent practicable, priorities should reflect the following national critical needs areas:
1. Sustainable energy
2. Global food security and hunger
3. Climate change
4. Nutrition and preventing childhood obesity
5. Food safety
6. Sustainable rural economies

Awards are made upon approval of each institution’s application for a grant that relate to an institution’s long-range goals. As indicated in Part 1, C. of the RFA, an application may address one (1) or more of the following program areas:
Curricula Design and Materials Development
Faculty Development and Preparation for Teaching
Instruction Delivery Systems
Student Experiential Learning
Equipment and Instrumentation for Teaching
Student Recruitment and Retention

Recognizing that strengthening instructional programs is a long-term ongoing process, the TCEG program is interested in funding subsequent phases of previously funded projects in order to strengthen institutional capacity, and institutions are encouraged to build on a theme over several grant awards to reach institutional long-range goals.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Active
Program Number
10.221
Federal Agency/Office
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Office: National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Fiscal Year 2014: For FY 2014:

The grant program began a new, four-year continuation cycle in 2014. At that time there were 32 eligible and participating 1994 Land Grant institutions.. Funds in the amount of $3,439,000 were distributed among the 32 schools. Fiscal Year 2015: For FY 2015:
The grant program continued its second year of a four-year continuation cycle in 2015. The 2014 Farm Bill authorized two (2) new 1994 Land Grant institutions. Hence, the total number of participating schools funded was 34. Funds in the amount of $3,439,000 were distributed among the 34 schools. Fiscal Year 2016: For FY 2016:
It is anticipated that Funding will be appropriated by Congress. Pertinent details to be provided by Program at a future date.
Authorization
Authority for the Tribal Colleges Education Equity Grants (TCEG) program is contained in the Equity in Educational Land-Grant Status Act of 1994 (7 U.S.C. 301 note) as amended by the Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 1998 (7 U.S.C. 7601 note). Appropriated funds are to be awarded to the 1994 Land-Grant Institutions (hereinafter referred to as 1994 Institutions) for Education capacity building and funds are to be distributed equally among institutions that meet eligibility requirements., 7 U.S.C 301 note.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Applications may be submitted by any of the Tribal colleges and universities designated as 1994 Land-Grant Institutions under the Educational Land-Grant Status Act of 1994, as amended. This Act, as amended in Section 533(a), requires that each 1994 Land-Grant Institution be accredited or making progress towards accreditation and be recognized as a legal entity. If accreditation is being sought, a college must demonstrate its progress towards accreditation by a letter from a nationally recognized accreditation agency affirming receipt of application for an accreditation site visit or other such documentation.

An applicant’s failure to meet an eligibility criterion by the time of an application deadline will result in NIFA returning the application without review or, even though an application may be reviewed, will preclude NIFA from making an award.

Award recipients may subcontract to organizations not eligible to apply provided such organizations are necessary for the conduct of project goals and objectives.
Beneficiary Eligibility
Current Listing of 1994 Land-Grant Institutions (aka Tribal Colleges)::
Aaniiih Nakoda College;Bay Mills Community College; Blackfeet Community College; Cankdeska Cikana Community College; Chief Dull Knife College; College of Menominee Nation; College of the Muscogee Nation; Dine’ College; Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College; Fort Peck Community College; Haskell Indian Nations University; Ilisagvik College; Institute of American Indian Arts; Keweenaw Bay Ojibwa Community College; Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College; Leech Lake Tribal College; Little Big Horn College; Little Priest Tribal College; Navajo Technical University; Nebraska Indian Community College; Nueta, Hidatsa and Sahnish College; Northwest Indian College; Oglala Lakota College; Saginaw Chippewa Tribal College; Salish Kootenai College; Sinte Gleska University; Sisseton Wahpeton College; Sitting Bull College; Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute; Stone Child College; Tohono O’odham Community College; Turtle Mountain Community College; United Tribes Technical College; and White Earth Tribal and Community College.
Credentials/Documentation
Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Number and System for Award Management (SAM) - each applicant (unless excepted under 2 CFR § 25.110(b) or (c), or has an exception approved by the Federal awarding agency under 2 CFR § 25.110(d)) is required to: (i) Be registered in SAM before submitting its application; (ii) provide a valid DUNS number in its application; and (iii) continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by a Federal awarding agency. It also must state that the Federal awarding agency may not make a Federal award to an applicant until the applicant has complied with all applicable DUNS and SAM requirements and, if an applicant has not fully complied with the requirements by the time the Federal awarding agency is ready to make a Federal award, the Federal awarding agency may determine that the applicant is not qualified to receive a Federal award and use that determination as a basis for making a Federal award to another applicant.

Applicants must furnish the information required in the request for applications (RFAs). Successful applicants recommended for funding must furnish the information and assurances requested during the award documentation process. These include, but are not limited to the following:

Organizational Management Information - Specific management information relating to an applicant shall be submitted on a one time basis, with updates on an as needed basis, as part of the responsibility determination prior to the award of a grant identified under this RFA, if such information has not been provided previously under this or another NIFA program. NIFA will provide copies of forms recommended for use in fulfilling these requirements as part of the preaward process. Although an applicant may be eligible based on its status as one of these entities, there are factors which may exclude an applicant from receiving Federal financial and nonfinancial assistance and benefits under this program (e.g., debarment or suspension of an individual involved or a determination that an applicant is not responsible based on submitted organizational management information). This information collection is approved under OMB Circular Control No. 0524-0026, “Assurance of Compliance with the Department of Agriculture Regulations Assuring Civil Rights, Compliance and Organization Information.”. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
All Requests for Applications (RFAs) are published on the Agency’s website and Grants.gov. Applicants must complete the Grants.gov registration process. Please see the following Grants.gov link for more information: http://www.grants.gov/applicants/get_registered.jsp. An environmental impact statement is required for this program. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Applications should be submitted as outlined in the RFA. Applications must follow the instructions provided per Grants.Gov and in the Agency guide to submitting applications via Grants.gov.
Award Procedure
Applications were subjected to a system of peer and merit review in accordance with section 103 of the Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 1998 (7 U.S.C. 7613) by a panel of qualified scientists and other appropriate persons who were specialists in the field covered by the proposal. Within the limit of funds available for such purpose, the NIFA Authorized Departmental Officer (ADO) shall make grants to those responsible, eligible applicants whose applications were judged most meritorious under the procedures set forth in the RFA. This information collection is approved under OMB Control No. 0524-0039, “NIFA Application Kit for Research and Extension Programs.

Reviewers were selected based upon training and experience in relevant scientific, extension, or education fields, taking into account the following factors:

(a) The level of relevant formal scientific, technical education, or extension experience of the individual, as well as the extent to which an individual is engaged in relevant research, education, or extension activities;

(b) the need to include as reviewers experts from various areas of specialization within relevant scientific, education, or extension fields;

(c) the need to include as reviewers other experts (e.g., producers, range or forest managers/operators, and consumers) who can assess relevance of the applications to targeted audiences and to program needs;

(d) the need to include as reviewers experts from a variety of organizational types (e.g., colleges, universities, industry, state and Federal agencies, private profit and non-profit organizations) and geographic locations;

(e) the need to maintain a balanced composition of reviewers with regard to minority and female representation and an equitable age distribution; and

(f) the need to include reviewers who can judge the effective usefulness to producers and the general public of each application.

Evaluation Criteria will be delineated in the RFA.

2 CFR Part 200 – Subpart C and Appendix I apply to this program.

2 CFR Part 400 applies to this program.
Deadlines
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
From 30 to 60 days. Dates for specific deadlines are announced in the RFA each fiscal year.
Information is also available via our website and may be obtained via the Grants.gov website.

Respective links are provided below:
http:/nifa.usda.gov/grants
http://www.grants.gov.
Appeals
2 CFR Part 200 – Subparts D & E apply to this program.
Renewals
Specific details are provided in the Request for Applications (RFA) each fiscal year.
How are proposals selected?
Within guidelines established for the program as described in the Request for Application (RFA).
How may assistance be used?
The Tribal College Equity Program (TCEG) provides funds to enhance educational opportunities for Native Americans by strengthening instructional programs in the food and agricultural sciences at the thirty four (34) tribal colleges designated as the 1994 Land-Grant Institutions (hereinafter referred to as 1994 Institutions).

Under this authority, appropriated funds are to be awarded to the 1994 Land-Grant Institutions (hereinafter referred to as 1994 Institutions) for Education capacity building and funds are to be distributed equally among institutions that meet eligibility requirements. Funding Restrictions:

Section 720 of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2012 (Pub.L. No. 112-55) limits indirect costs to 30 percent of the total Federal funds provided under each award. Therefore, when preparing budgets, applicants should limit their requests for recovery of indirect costs to the lesser of their institution’s official negotiated indirect cost rate or the equivalent of 30 percent of total Federal funds awarded.

Therefore, when preparing budgets, applicants should limit their requests for recovery of indirect costs to the lesser of their institution’s official negotiated indirect cost rate or the equivalent of 30 percent of total Federal funds awarded.

Indirect costs for the Equity program are not required and a 1994 institution may take less than the allowable amount or forego indirect costs altogether - adjust budgets accordingly.

Neither research nor extension projects are supported under the TCEG Program.

The use of grant funds to plan, acquire, or construct a building or facility is not allowed under this program. With prior approval, and in accordance with the cost principles set forth in OMB Circular No. A-21, some grant funds may be used for minor alterations, renovations, or repairs deemed necessary to retrofit existing teaching or research spaces in order to carry out a funded project. However, requests to use grant funds for such purposes must demonstrate that the alterations, renovations, or repairs are essential to achieving the major purpose of the project.

Grant funds may not be used for endowment investing.

Special Notices:
1. NIFA will withhold all funds for a TCEG award to an applicant requesting indirect costs if the applicant has not negotiated an indirect cost rate with its cognizant federal agency.

2. If a grantee is in the process of negotiating an indirect cost rate with its federal agency, NIFA will withhold all funds from that grantee until the indirect cost rate has been established.

3. If an institution’s indirect cost rate has expired or will expire in the near future, a clear statement on renegotiation efforts must be included in the application. (See Part IV, B.5. of the RFA - Budget Justification.)

4. It is incumbent on all applicants to have a current indirect cost rate or begin negotiations to establish an indirect cost rate prior to the TCEG submission deadline. Because it may take several months to obtain an indirect cost rate, applicants needing an indirect cost rate are encouraged to start work on establishing these rates well in advance of submitting a TCEG application.

5. In lieu of requesting indirect costs (if the applicant does not have a negotiated rate), an applicant may prepare a budget in which all charges in the budget are included as direct costs.

NIFA does not require matching support for this program. Fully discretionary.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Reporting
Award Terms and Conditions:

Awards are accompanied by provisions including Terms and Conditions for the funded project. Grantees must stay informed and guided by the Terms and Conditions of the award regarding required reports, program/project data collection, program income, release of information, sharing of findings, data, and other project products, patents, inventions, copyrights, etc.

Grantees are to submit initial project information and annual summary reports to NIFA’s electronic, Web-based inventory system that facilitates both grantee submissions of project outcomes and public access to information on Federally-funded projects. The details of the reporting requirements are included in the award terms and conditions.

Annual Performance Report:
Annual performance reports are due 30 days after the anniversary date of the award and should be submitted to Grantees are to submit initial project information and annual summary reports to NIFA’s electronic, Web-based inventory system that facilitates both grantee submissions of project outcomes and public access to information on Federally-funded projects.

The details of the reporting requirements are included in the award terms and conditions.1) a comparison of actual accomplishments with the goals established for the reporting period;
2) if established goals were not met, the reasons
3) documentation of outputs; i.e., significant activities, including dissemination activities, events, services or products that contribute toward achieving the goals and objectives of the project
4) outcomes/impacts; i.e., a change in knowledge, actions or conditions;
5) any other indication of increased capacity for carrying out the land grant mission

Final Technical Report:
A final technical report must be submitted within 90 days to NIFA’s electronic, Web-based inventory system that facilitates both grantee submissions of project outcomes and public access to information on Federally-funded projects.

The details of the reporting requirements are included in the award terms and conditions.. Generally, the final technical report should be a summary of the completed project, including:
1. A review of project objectives and accomplishments;
2. A description of outcomes resulting from the project and activities undertaken to disseminate these outcomes;
3. An explanation of partnerships and collaborative ventures that resulted from the project, including future initiatives that are planned as a result of the project;
4. A description of the project’s impact on the PD(s), the institution(s) involved, and the community;
5. Any pertinent data on project personnel and beneficiaries. The final technical report also must contain any other information specified in the terms and conditions of the award; and,

Quarterly “Reports of Federal Cash Transactions” (SF-272) were required by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) (www.dpm.psc.gov) and were submitted online through the DHHS Payment Management System (PMS) website. If you become delinquent in these reports, you will not be able to access your funds.

A final “Financial Status Report” (SF-269) or “”Federal Financial Report” (SF-425) is due within 90 days of the expiration date of the grant and should be submitted at the address listed below, in accordance with instructions contained in 2 CFR 3430.55 (also refer to Section 3015.82 of the Uniform Federal Assistance Regulations).

Awards Management Division (AMD)
Office of Grants and Financial Management (OGFM)
National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
STOP 2271
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20250-2271
Telephone: (202) 401-4986. NIFA uses SF-425, Federal Financial Report to monitor cash. (Pertinent details regarding Progress Reports are provided above.). A final “Financial Status Report” (SF-269) or “”Federal Financial Report” (SF-425) is due within 90 days of the expiration date of the grant and should be submitted to the Awards Management Branch, Office of Extramural Programs at the address listed below, in accordance with instructions contained in 2 CFR 3430.55 (also refer to Section 3015.82 of the Uniform Federal Assistance Regulations).

Awards Management Branch
Office of Extramural Programs
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
U.S. Department of Agriculture
STOP 2271
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20250-2271
Telephone: (202) 401-4986. (Pertinent details regarding Performance Monitoring Reports are provided above.).
Auditing
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. In accordance with 2 CFR Part 400 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, Subpart F—Audit Requirements nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more during the non-Federal entity’s fiscal year in Federal awards must have a single or program-specific audit conducted for that year in accordance with the provisions of this part. A non-Federal entity that expends less than $750,000 during the non-Federal entity’s fiscal year in Federal awards is exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in § 200.503. Relation to other audit requirements, but records must be available for review or audit by appropriate officials of the Federal agency, pass-through entity, and Government Accountability Office (GAO).

This program is also subject to audit by the cognizant Federal audit agency and the USDA Office of Inspector General.
Records
In accordance with 2 CFR Part 400 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, § 200.333 Retention requirements for records. Grantees shall maintain separate records for each grant to ensure that funds are used for authorized purposes. Grant-related records are subject to inspection during the life of the grant and must be retained at least three (3) years. Records must be retained beyond the three (3) year period if litigation is pending or audit findings have not been resolved.

2 CFR Part 200, Subpart D applies to this program.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formulas are not applicable to this program.
This program has no matching requirements. There is no statutory formula for this program. However, appropriated funds are to be awarded to the 1994 Land-Grant Institutions (hereinafter referred to as 1994 Institutions) for Education capacity building and funds are to be distributed equally among institutions that meet eligibility requirements. Equity Funds for ineligible 1994 institutions or of those who fail to apply by the application submission date will be redistributed equally among the remaining eligible 1994 institutions.

NIFA does not require matching or cost sharing support for this program.
MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Under this RFA, only new applications for four-year continuation awards may be submitted to the TCEG Program. These are project applications not previously submitted to TCEG. All new applications will be reviewed by a review panel using the process and criteria described in Part V of the RFA – Application Review Requirements.

2 CFR Part 200, Subpart D applies to this program. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: by letter of credit.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
None.
Headquarters Office
USDA, NIFA, National Program Leader, Institute of Youth, Family, and Community, Division of Community and Education, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., STOP 2250, Washington , District of Columbia 20250-2250 Email: Policy@nifa.usda.gov Phone: (202) 720-2324 Fax: (202) 720-2030.
Website Address
http://nifa.usda.gov/program/tribal-equity-grants-program
Financial Information
Account Identification
12-1500-0-1-352.
Obligations
(Project Grants) FY 14 $3,439,000; FY 15 est $3,439,000; and FY 16 est $3,654,000 - Based on current legislation there are no set-asides for the Higher-Ed Native American Institutions program.

Further, federal administration is not deducted from the program.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Appropriated funds are to be awarded to the 1994 Land-Grant Institutions (hereinafter referred to as 1994 Institutions) for Education capacity building and funds are to be distributed equally among institutions that meet eligibility requirements. Equity Funds for ineligible 1994 institutions or of those who fail to apply by the application submission date will be redistributed equally among the remaining eligible 1994 institutions.

Under this RFA, only new applications for four-year continuation awards may be submitted to the TCEG Program. These are project applications not previously submitted to TCEG. All new applications will be reviewed by a review panel using the process and criteria described in Part V of the RFA – Application Review Requirements.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
The following federal statutes and regulations represent general administrative requirements which apply to NIFA federal assistance programs. These include, but are not limited to the ones listed below.

2 CFR Part 25 - Universal Identifier and Central Contractor Registration

2 CFR Part 170 - Reporting Subaward and Executive Compensation Information

2 CFR Part 175 - Award Term for Trafficking in Persons

2 CFR Part 180 and Part 417 - OMB Guidelines to Agencies on Government-Wide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) and USDA Nonprocurement Debarment and Suspension

2 CFR Part 182 - Governmentwide Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Financial Assistance)

2 CFR Part 200 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards

2 CFR Part 400 – USDA implementation of 2 CFR Part 200 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards

2 CFR Part 415 - General Program Administrative Regulations

2 CFR Part 416 – USDA General Program Administrative Regulations for Grants and Cooperative Agreements to State and Local Governments

2 CFR Part 417 - Nonprocurement Debarment and Suspension

2 CFR Part 418 - New Restrictions on Lobbying

2 CFR Part 421 - Requirements for Drug-Free Workplace (Financial Assistance)

2 CFR Part 422—Research Institutions Conducting USDA-Funded Extramural Research; Research Misconduct.

7 CFR Part 1, subpart A—USDA implementation of the Freedom of Information Act and 7 CFR Part 3404, Public Information.

7 CFR Part 1c—USDA Implementation of the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects

7 CFR Part 3—USDA implementation of OMB Circular No. A-129 regarding debt collection

7 CFR Part 15, subpart A—USDA implementation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended

7 CFR Part 331 and 9 CFR Part 121—USDA implementation of the Agricultural Bioterrorism Protection Act of 2002

7 CFR Part 3407—USDA procedures to implement the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended

7 CFR Part 3418—Stakeholder Input Requirements for Recipients of Agricultural Research, Education, and Extension Formula Funds

7 CFR Part 3419—Matching Funds Requirement for Agricultural Research and Extension Formula Funds at 1890 Land–Grant Institutions, Including Tuskegee University, and at 1862 Land–Grant Institutions in Insular Areas

7 CFR Part 3430—Competitive and Noncompetitive Non-formula Financial Assistance Programs--General Award Administrative Provisions

7 CFR Part 3434—Hispanic–Serving Agricultural Colleges and Universities Certification Process

29 U.S.C. 794 (section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973) and 7 CFR Part 15b (USDA implementation of statute) —prohibiting discrimination based upon physical or mental handicap in federally-assisted programs

35 U.S.C. 200 et seq. —Bayh Dole Act, controlling allocation of rights to inventions made by employees of small business firms and domestic nonprofit organizations, including universities, in federally-assisted programs (implementing regulations are contained in 37 CFR Part 401)

44 U.S.C. 3551-3558 (Pub. L. 113–283) - Federal Information Security Modernization Act of 2014 (FISMA). Applies to awardees if it will collect, store, process, transmit, or use information on behalf of NIFA.

Executive Order 13513, Federal Leadership on Reducing Text Messaging while Driving (Oct. 1, 2009).

NIFA Federal Assistance Policy Guide—a compendium of basic NIFA policies and procedures that apply to all NIFA awards, unless there are statutory, regulatory, or award-specific requirements to the contrary.

In addition, the following represent Program-Specific requirements:

7 CFR Part 3400 – Special Research Grants Program (for CFDA 10.200)

7 CFR Part 3401—Rangeland Research Grants Program (CFDA 10.200)

7 CFR Part 3402—Food and Agricultural Sciences National Needs Graduate and Postgraduate Fellowship Grants Program (CFDA 10.210).

7 CFR Part 3403—Small Business Innovation Research Grants Program (CFDA 10.212)

7 CFR Part 3405—Higher Education Challenge Grants Program (CFDA 10.217)

7 CFR Part 3406—1890 Institution Capacity Building Grants Program (CFDA 10.216)

7 CFR Part 3415 – Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants Program (CFDA 10.219)

7 CFR Part 3431—Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (CFDA 10.313)


Examples of Funded Projects
Fiscal Year 2014: For FY 2014:

Northwest Indian Community College will improve the math literacy of its graduates so they can pursue advanced degrees, succeed in the workplace or simply better manage their family finances. The project goal is to increase the mean percentage of students who complete college-level math classes from 20 percent to 35 percent during the grant period and increase the number of students passing developmental math classes with a "C" or better by ten to 15 percent. The college will achieve this goal by training faculty in optimal ways to teach math, with a focus on using math to develop critical thinking, problem solving and reasoning skills.

Blackfeet community college invited students who had dropped out from its programs to a focus group on how to ensure more students graduated. The students said they wanted more experiential learning. In order to increase student retention by 30 percent the college will introduce nature-based outdoor learning as part of all of its core classes and eventually in all programs. There will be a working retreat where faculty will learn how to incorporate teaching about natural science as part of other subjects. Blackfeet Community College also has a state-of-the-art science lab that has been funded through a research partnership Montana State University. The lab will now be used to expose more students to science as part of their course requirements, giving some students their introduction to research.

Working with the U.S. Forest Service, the college established the Center for First American Forestlands within its Sustainable Development Institute. Now the institute will beta test a technical diploma in forestry resources designed to provide industry employment within six months of graduation. Industry leaders, students and faculty will all play a role in the development of this new degree program. In addition, a Forest Products Specialist will be hired to assist with the development of special emphasis courses for the year-long intensive curriculum. Students will have the opportunity to attend a trial run of the classes to ensure they provide a worthwhile educational opportunity. In addition, faculty will continue to develop new research projects in sustainable forestry to enhance their teaching. The U.S. Forest service will co-teach some courses as well. Finally the institute will offer two internships annually. Fiscal Year 2015: For FY 2015:

Program Impact: In 2014, several of the 1994 Land-Grants embarked on math literacy initiatives, impacting at least 638 students in three states.

Diné College—

This college responded to results from Arizona’s state school standardized test that indicated Native American students were at the bottom on math achievement. The college plans to reverse that statistic through teacher training and partnerships with neighboring primary and secondary schools. The Baa Hozho Engineering Festival for 6-to-12th-grade students drew 298 youth and 26 teachers for 15 sessions on STEM, which were run by Diné College students and other Navajo Nation community-based organizations. The college provided teachers with STEM instructional kits and a robotics activities for their students. The college helped primary school teachers start math circles to introduce games and activities that promote problem solving abilities.

Northwest Indian College—

This college transformed its math department so that the mean percentage of students who complete college-level math classes rises by 35 percent and the number of students pass developmental math classes with a “C” or better climbs to 15 percent. Math faculty attended teaching workshops led by the college’s STEM coordinator, a Northwest Indian graduate now studying mathematics at Western Washington University. The STEM coordinator will also be tracking how the new teaching methods affect student learning. This will complement a special pilot project for math literacy and college readiness in youth. Northwest Indian College will partner with Lummi Nation School (LNS) and Lummi Nation Youth Enrichment and Social Services (YESS) to provide a college readiness and financial literacy curriculum for 7-12 grade Lummi students that is grounded in Native language and tribal values. The curriculum teaches math concepts and goal setting to youth with of few of saving for college while young. A key part of this project will be implemented during a summer bridge camp. It will also increase the number of financial literacy trainers to tribal communities. A total of 340 youth benefitted from the first year of this special project.


Leech Lake Tribal College—

This college used NIFA funding to supports upper level math and science courses that student must pass to earn an associate’s in natural science. On average, no more than three student annually have the skills and confidence to take these classes, and equity funding is instrumental to these students getting their degree. The project director provides leadership for a a high powered rocket program is being developed at the college where youth compete at the First Nations Rocket Launch for Tribal Colleges. This serves as an important recruitment tool for the college’s math and science program. Fiscal Year 2016: For FY 2016:
These programs will be under the third year of a four-year continuation and activities conducted will be similar to previous years.

 


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