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2005.04.25 > For Immediate Release
contact: Teresa Gleason - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.2762 - email: tmgleason@mail.unomaha.edu

UNO's Project Achieve Receives $1.19 Million Federal Grant

Omaha – The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) has received a $1.19 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to fund a program aimed at helping first generation students succeed in college.

Project Achieve, which opened its doors at UNO in 1993, is part of a group of federally funded programs known as Student Support Services (SSS).  Like other educational institutions across the United States, UNO chose a designated in-house name – Project Achieve – for its SSS program.

The new grant, which funds 95.8% of the program's total cost, will provide funding for 2005 through 2009.

"Project Achieve is important because it provides academic support and mentoring to students who might not experience academic success without these services," said Wade Robinson, associate vice chancellor for student affairs at UNO.

Currently, the program serves 150 undergraduate students each year.  In order to participate in Project Achieve, students must:

• Be enrolled or accepted for enrollment at UNO;

• Be first-generation college students (neither parent has completed a bachelor's degree); and

• Meet income guidelines and/or have a disability requiring academic accommodations.

Besides academic support, Project Achieve works with the financial aid office to advise students of the availability of resources to help address their unmet financial need.

"Also, it's common for low-income students to have limited access to technology," said Sharon Ulmar, the program's interim director.  "Project Achieve has facilitated student access to technology by initiating a computer loan program."

During the program's 12-year history, degrees have been awarded to approximately 120 Project Achieve participants, some of whom have since enrolled in graduate or professional schools.

"I'm excited the university has received this funding during a time when budgets for this project have been reduced in Washington, D.C.," Ulmar said.  "Our office is pleased to continue to serve this much needed population of the campus."

The original Project Achieve grant at UNO was first funded by the U.S. Department of Education for a four-year cycle in 1992 and has been continuously supported since then.

For more information about Project Achieve, contact Ulmar at (402) 554-2872.

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