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Lyon receives grant from the Winthrop Rockefelller Foundation | Arts & Culture

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Lyon receives grant from the Winthrop Rockefelller Foundation
Lyon receives grant from the Winthrop Rockefelller Foundation

BATESVILLE, Ark. (Lyon)- A grant from the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation will help young men attending Lyon College become leaders in Arkansas.
The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation awarded Lyon $125,000 to fund the “Spragins Scholars: Transforming Men from Low-Income Backgrounds into Leader-Advocates for Arkansas” program. The grant will support academic, leadership, professional, and social development programming for low-income male students. The goal is to help marginalized young men become leaders in their communities across the state. The grant will be paid in four annual installments from April 1, 2015 to March 31, 2019.
“This pilot program at Lyon College will mesh well with the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation’s goal of increasing educational attainment,” said Gina Garrett, executive director of advancement. “This grant will allow us to layer extra support on top of existing programs designed to help students navigate the transition from high school to college. With these dollars, we hope to better target efforts to help this specific population persist to graduation and equip them to advocate for changes that will make the road smoother for future students facing similar challenges.”
During the first year of the program, special focus will be given to helping young men make the transition from high school to college, both academically and socially. In the second year, participants will begin intensive leadership development. In the third and fourth years, students will receive advocacy training and gain experience by identifying a challenge for students from similar backgrounds, proposing a solution to overcome the challenge, and advocating for it. Dustyn Bork, associate professor of art at Lyon College, will be the program director. Dr. Pat Mulick, associate professor of psychology, was instrumental in the development of the program.
“The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation grant has come at a perfect time for Lyon. As we are growing and attracting more students from a variety of backgrounds, we are always looking for new ways to assist our students with their development and success. These funds will allow us to provide additional orientation, advising, and leadership opportunities for the Spragins Scholars, as well as putting money directly toward their education in the form of scholarships,” Mulick said.
For 40 years, the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation has worked to make a difference by helping to build and sustain the organizations that serve and strengthen Arkansas. Through grantmaking and strategic partnerships, WRF is working even harder to help close the economic and educational gaps that leave too many Arkansas families in persistent poverty. Working together, the needle can and must move from poverty to prosperity for all Arkansans. For more information on the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, go to www.wrfoundation.org.