TCL receives grants to support African-American students

The Technical College of the Lowcountry was recently awarded two grants from the U.S. Department of Education to enhance the College’s capacity to serve low and middle-income African- American students. Both grants, which were awarded through the Predominantly Black Institutions Program, are expected to total $3.65 million over the next five years.
“These grants perfectly support the College’s increased emphasis on student success,” TCL President Dr. Tom Leitzel said. “The opportunity to broaden and intensify our impact on student achievement will greatly enhance our ability to help students reach their goals.”
Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Matteel Jones added, “TCL students will be positively impacted by this project and will have extra support in achieving the success that they deserve.”
The first award is a formula-grant that focuses on improving student success in TCL’s developmental education courses. This five-year grant will enable TCL to establish an on-site and online writing lab and expand its existing math lab. In addition, TCL will design and implement developmental reading, math, and English courses with rolling entry at multiple levels. TCL expects to receive $250,000 per year for five years.
The second grant was awarded through a competitive grant program and will fund the continuation of project PILAU, which is named for a popular Lowcountry rice dish and is an acronym for Promoting Integrity, Leadership, Academics and cultural Understanding. Under this grant, TCL expects to receive $600,000 per year for the next four years.
PILAU is designed to improve the educational outcomes of African-American males enrolled at TCL by creating a learning community that supports academic success, retention, persistence, and completion outcomes.  The new grant will also fund a learning program to immerse PILAU participants in the fundamental concepts of an entrepreneurial mind-set.
PILAU offers intensive academic interventions to ensure student success in securing an associate’s degree through full-time enrollment at TCL. Participants develop leadership skills, successfully complete courses, enhance self-esteem and pride, and gain a better cultural understanding of Gullah and area communities. PILAU began in 2008 when TCL received a two-year PBI grant totaling $1.1 million.
For more information, please contact Grants Administrator Pat Irwin at pirwin@tcl.edu or 843.525.8317.

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