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New Hampshire Alliance for College and Career Readiness awards innovation grants aimed at building students’ long-term success after high school graduation

The New Hampshire Alliance for College and Career Readiness has awarded grants to help five educational organizations around the state to invest in programs aimed at students’ success after high school graduation. Each grant is for the 2018-2019 school year.

The recipients of the $5,000 grants are:

  • Careers CLiC
  • Keene State College
  • Laconia School District
  • Saint Anselm Access Academy (Manchester)
  • Salem High School

“In New Hampshire there is tremendous innovation taking place in towns and communities across the state--the goal of the Alliance is make sure that each and every child in NH has equal access to these exceptional opportunities,” said Jessica Rodriguez , Alliance Director. “These grants are a way to propel local innovations to the next level and elevate best practices for helping young people in their long-term pathways after high school.”

New Hampshire has one of the highest high school graduation rates in the country with 88 percent of students graduating, yet only 54 percent of students attend further schooling after graduation. The rate is even lower – 36 percent – for students from economically disadvantaged homes. Even for students who do go on to college, many are not fully prepared. Of the New Hampshire students enrolled in college in the fall of 2016, only 60 percent reached a college readiness benchmark in English, and only 37 percent in math.

“With this grant and assistance from Reaching Higher NH, we’ve been able to help more students, allowing them focus on school or other training programs that will give them the skills they need for their first job.” said Rodriguez.That’s the point of the grants - to recognize community-level innovators who are thinking differently about how to support their students.”


The Alliance held a workshop for the grantees and other educational stakeholders on August 27 at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester to explore policy research and programs for college and career readiness, as well as offer the grantees tools they can use to further advance their goals. Expert panelists on program sustainability included: Dean Graziano, Extended Learning Coordinator at Spaulding High School, Crystal Mockler, Manager of Community Relations at Northeast Delta Dental, and Kathleen Reardon, CEO of the NH Center for Nonprofits.


The Alliance is a diverse group of leaders and practitioners from the business, industry, K-12, philanthropy, and higher education sectors who are working to strengthen the college and career readiness of New Hampshire’s students. The coalition gathers insights, research and analysis, as well as supports programs and practices that assist young people in reaching their goals of higher education and workforce readiness. As part of this effort, the Alliance fosters support for high standards in our public schools, giving all New Hampshire children the opportunity to prepare for careers and college, and providing resources for families, practitioners, and policymakers. For more information on these organizations, go to

The following 2018 grantee programs are:

Careers CliC

Careers CLiC guides K-12 students through the Continuum of Career Development by connecting schools and employers. TIPS, designed for 9th-12th grade students, supports youth workforce development through a 14-lesson career readiness course, which prepares high school students for internships and their first jobs. Careers CLiC has designed an employer-training workshop to ensure that businesspeople are equipped to provide meaningful work based learning experiences to youth. The workshop content includes topics such as the progression of student career development, transferable skills, child labor laws, liability and internship training plans. With this grant, Careers CLiC will recruit and train NH employers to prepare them to work with TIPS students at 10 pilot sites across the state. Focus: ​Increasing business engagement in college and career readiness Geographic Reach: Concord, Farmington, Hillsboro-Deering, Hopkinton, Mascoma, Manchester, and Oyster River.


Keene State College

Keene State College proposes to offer extended learning opportunities (ELOs) in reading and writing to local elementary school children. The team will collaborate with public school teachers and administrators to develop multi-age book clubs that support the learning and teaching experiences of the first-year college students and the literacy development of the children they will work with in the service learning project. Once these book clubs have been established, the college writing center will train education majors to facilitate creative writing groups that will provide opportunities for college and elementary students to write together and eventually publish and present their work to the community.


Laconia School District

This project will expand and deepen the successful efforts of the Laconia Middle School (LMS) REAL Youth Leadership Team. The REAL Youth Leadership Team will collaborate with Laconia High School Students who participate in the “Freedom Found” extended day program, which offers high-quality social/emotional youth programming. Convening these two leadership teams will bridge the gap between middle and high school students; expand and deepen authentic and active relationships across school community, and business sectors; impact students' sense of purpose, 21st century skill development and college, career and life readiness; and design and coordinate the second annual REAL Collaborative in the Spring of 2019.


Saint Anselm Access Academy

Based out of Saint Anselm College, Access Academy is a campus-based after-school, credit-bearing educational program for refugee, immigrant and other underrepresented students from Manchester’s four public high schools. Through this Extended Learning Opportunity, students can access computer science, environmental studies, college admissions, and career exploration. Saint Anselm proposes to increase access to this program through expanded community and parent outreach.


Salem High School

Salem High School will create a model infrastructure for connecting local businesses with schools through their BizEd Connect Project. Housing the largest high school internship program in the state, SHS’s Work Based Learning program will test out a model for dynamically bringing business and industry partners together with students and the broader education community. Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) Students will partner with SHS on building out this database, which weaves another layer of project-based learning for students at the college level