Elizabeth City State University receives $175K grant to bolster adult learning programs

North Carolina

ECSU 2018 Spring Graduation Ceremony (Courtesy – ECSU)

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (WAVY) — Elizabeth City State University has received a $175,000 grant to help bolster adult learning programs at the school.

ECSU is one of five HBCUs in North Carolina to receive the grant from the Lumina Foundation which is an independent, private foundation based in Indianapolis, Indiana

Adults returning to higher education, or coming to universities for the first time, is a growing trend across the country.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, nearly 40 percent of all enrolled college students are 25 and older, and this number is projected to rise.

In a recent release, ECSU’s Vice Chancellor for the Division of Student Affairs, Dr. Gary Brown says the school continues to gain adult learners.

“In the fall of 2019, we had 359 adult learners. In 2020 we had 446, now, in 2021, we have 521 adult learners,” said Dr. Brown.

Dr. Brown said the grant will assist ECSU in developing a three-step strategy to assist adult students.

  • Develop a survey that will help the university understand the experience of the students and “create a baseline to better serve our adult learners”
  • Create a policy that allows ECSU to give credit to adult learners for the experience they bring. Work and life experience could, under this policy, be counted toward college credit hours.
  • Look at making education even more accessible to adult students including evening and weekend classes.

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