Home E News E LPU Awarded $2.3 Million U.S. Department of Education Federal Grant
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University, California

students smiling around a computerIn its 100th year, Life Pacific University is proud to announce that it has been awarded its first federal grant by the U.S. Department of Education.

Beginning this fall, LPU will launch a 5-year Student Success Initiative with a grant of $2,369,275 from the Office of Postsecondary Education of the U.S. Department of Education.

“The comprehensive nature of this grant serves students, staff, and faculty and will also broaden and deepen the transformative experience LPU can provide for our students and the communities that we serve,” said President Angie Richey. “We are thrilled by this award and the affirmation of the wonderful opportunities that lie ahead.”

Classified as a Hispanic Serving Institution since 2014, Life Pacific University is committed to expanding educational opportunities and improving the academic attainment of Hispanic students and underserved students. The comprehensive 5-year Student Success Initiative was crafted by LPU to increase student retention and degree completion rates through an integrated and strategically sequenced initiative.

The grant enables LPU to provide increased support by developing ‘LIFE Bridge’ a summer intensive program to help close the gap and prepare incoming freshmen for their journey from graduating high school to entering university-level coursework. Other programming includes expanded Student Success coaching, peer mentoring, and career preparedness. A significant feature of the initiative will be an increased emphasis on training and educational development for faculty and staff. A Certificate in Student Success will be created and used for present and future LPU team members as they join our community and provide support to students.

LPU exists for the transformational development of students into leaders prepared to serve God in the Church, the workplace, and the world. The U.S. Department of Education recognizes that the Student Success Initiative will help students build personal competence and resilience to live powerful and transformed lives during and beyond their years at LPU.

A core team of faculty and staff submitted the grant proposal in June 2022. LPU’s proposal was initially rejected last September with federal grant reviewer scores of just .7 points below the cutoff score for awarding. However, the Department of Education reached out to LPU in March to announce that additional grant funding was released for a limited number of highly ranked applications previously submitted. LPU’s proposal was chosen to receive the full amount requested for the Student Success Initiative. This turn of events is further evidence of God’s care and provision for LPU students today and for years to come.

Dr. Daniel Ruarte, Provost & Vice President of Academic Affairs, says, “The Student Success Initiative grant is very close to my heart as someone interested in student retention and helping students reach their educational goals. It is the first of its kind for LPU and I am grateful to God that He is allowing me to see this dream become a reality. Special thanks to key faculty and staff including Prof. Luci Sanders, Director of Academic Support Center; Prof. Brian Tomhave, Dean of Institutional Effectiveness; and Lynnette Lozoya, Executive Director of Development. You did it!”