Supporting students

in accessing higher education

什么是 大学事务?

大学事务, a $15 million grantmaking initiative of the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation, seeks to increase college enrollment rates for Marion County high school seniors, especially for students less likely to enroll in college, including students from low-income households, Black students, and Hispanic and Latino students.

High school students face a variety of challenges when considering college, including accessing coursework that prepares them for college, identifying possible career options, and obtaining financial aid. For students without access to relevant support and resources, these challenges can turn into barriers that keep them from applying to and enrolling in college — furthering existing racial and socioeconomic disparities in education and worsening talent shortages in the Indy region.

To help remove some of these barriers and increase college enrollment, 大学事务 is awarding grants to Marion County public high schools and community organizations in two phases, Meeting the Moment and Reversing the Trend. The grantees in both phases will use the funding to support Indianapolis students and their families as they navigate the process of exploring, enrolling in and financing college.

Of all 2021 Marion County high school graduates, only 48% enrolled in college, down from 62% just a decade ago. 1
Only 39% of 2021 high school graduates from low-income households in Marion County enrolled in college, compared to 55% of their higher-income peers. 1
45% / 38%
In 2021, Black high school graduates and Hispanic and Latino high school graduates in Marion County were less likely than others to enroll in college, with 45% of Black graduates and 38% of Hispanic and Latino graduates enrolling compared with 63% of their Asian peers and 52% of their white peers. 1
In 2023, only 39% of Marion County seniors completed the FAFSA. 2

1 Indiana College Readiness Dashboard2 FAFSA 完成仪表板


More college graduates needed

Low college enrollment is a challenge to our economic vitality. Indianapolis employers continue to report difficulty finding talent with the education and skills needed to fill open positions. Fewer Marion County residents have college degrees than many of our peer cities, which puts us at a competitive disadvantage when trying to attract new businesses and better jobs.

For individuals, education beyond high school contributes to a higher annual income and improved financial stability. Further, increased educational attainment is associated with increased health, happiness, quality of life and civic engagement.


Grants to support FAFSA completion and college enrollment

通过 College Matters: Meeting the Moment, the Foundation awarded nearly $5 million in short-term grants to Marion County public schools, community organizations, and the Indiana Commission for Higher Education in September 2023. These grants provide support to students in two areas: completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) — now a requirement to graduate high school in Indiana — and exploring their college options.

Meeting the Moment: Grants to schools

To assist students and their families in meeting Indiana’s new FAFSA mandate during the 2023-24 and 2024-25 school years, the Foundation awarded a total of $3.25 million in grants to 37 Marion County public high schools within 17 school corporations.*

克里斯特尔之家 印第安纳波利斯$160,000
Goodwill Foundation of Central & Southern Indiana$200,000
KIPP 印地公立学校$150,000
MSD of Decatur Township$200,000
劳伦斯镇 MSD$240,000
派克镇 MSD$200,000
沃伦镇 MSD$240,000
韦恩镇 MSD$240,000
Perry Township Schools$240,000
* The amount of grant funding was awarded based on a school’s organization type and total enrollment of high school seniors.

Meeting the Moment: Grants to community organizations

To reach students and their families in places other than schools, four Marion County community organizations received grants totaling $1.35 million over three years to support students in exploring, enrolling in and financing college.

Meeting the Moment: Grant to Indiana Commission for Higher Education

To fund convenings and facilitate the exchange of information between grantees and the State of Indiana, the 印第安纳州高等教育委员会 received a three-year, $363,000 grant.


Grants to implement proven college enrollment strategies

To make an even larger impact on the college enrollment rate, the Fairbanks Foundation announced College Matters: Reversing the Trend in December 2023. This phase of 大学事务, which seeks to reverse the decline in college enrollment among Marion County high school students, launched a competitive grant process for Marion County public school corporations to apply for funding to implement strategies aimed at increasing college enrollment.

通过 Reversing the Trend, the Fairbanks Foundation is awarding funding in two stages. The first stage, which opened Dec. 5, 2023, and closed Feb. 1, 2024, allowed public school corporations to apply for one of six planning grants to support the development of four-year plans to increase college enrollment. These plans will use proven or innovative strategies to increase college enrollment, with an emphasis on students who are less likely to enroll in college.

From a total of 20 applicants, six school corporations were chosen to receive $20,000 planning grants:

Each of the grantees will receive technical assistance from national research firm Mathematica as they select the appropriate interventions for their schools and develop an implementation plan.

In the second stage of the grant process, which will take place in late July 2024, the six school corporations that received the planning grants will be invited to submit proposals for additional grants of up to $1.5 million each that, if awarded, will support the implementation of their four-year plans. Each grantee can also use this grant money to plan for how they will sustain their work beyond the grant period.


Activity Date 
Informational webinars Jan. 10, 2024, and Jan. 12, 2024
Planning grant applications due Noon EST on Feb. 1, 2024
Planning grantee notification March 25, 2024
Planning grant period March 25, 2024 – July 31, 2024
Implementation grant proposals due July 31, 2024
Implementation grantee notification Sept. 3, 2024
Implementation grant period Sept. 3, 2024 – June 30, 2028

大学事务 资源

Below, you’ll find a variety of items used to inform the creation of the 大学事务 initiative, including data sources and relevant research. For more information on 大学事务,联系基金会工作人员: 学院

This competitive Request for Applications solicited proposals from eligible Marion County public high schools interested in receiving College Matters: Reversing the Trend planning grant funding.


Schools applying for College Matters: Reversing the Trend planning grants were encouraged to use this template when submitting a line-item budget for the planning grant period.


This Frequently Asked Questions document includes information relevant to schools applying for College Matters: Reversing the Trend planning grants.


This appendix to the College Matters: Reversing the Trend Request for Applications contains summaries of evidence-based interventions that fall under three strategies to increase college enrollment: 1) strengthen college and career counseling; 2) increase families’ financial awareness and help students apply for financial aid; and 3) bolster students’ academic preparation for college.


这篇期刊文章强调了路易斯安那州政策的影响,该政策要求完成 FAFSA 作为高中毕业的要求。该研究表明,路易斯安那州的 FAFSA 完成任务导致 FAFSA 完成率增加了 19 个百分点,大学入学率增加了 1-2 个百分点。


The College Readiness Dashboard provides interactive data to supplement the annual College Readiness Reports; data is available for the state overall as well as by county, school district and school. The Dashboard includes data for high school graduates from the classes of 2012 through 2021.


本报告重点介绍了 2019 年高中毕业生的人口统计数据、他们的学术准备水平、大学入学率、早期大学成功指标(2018 年毕业生)和毕业率(2020 年毕业生)。




大学结业仪表板提供交互式数据来补充年度大学结业报告;提供全州以及各县、学区和学校的数据。该仪表板包含 2006 年秋季开始进入大学的学生的数据。




大学价值报告仪表板提供交互式数据来补充大学价值报告;可以获取所有国家机构的总体数据以及各个公共机构、学位级别和计划领域的数据。该仪表板包含从 2008 年开始到 2017 年毕业的大学学生的数据。




费尔班克斯基金会的免费数据资源,称为社区数据快照 (CDS),包括马里恩县和州级有关基金会重点领域教育、健康和印第安纳波利斯活力的各种措施的信息。社区数据快照的教育部分包含与以下内容相关的多组数据: 大学事务,包括高中毕业率、大学入学率和大学坚持率以及 SAT 成绩和高中文凭类型。其中许多措施也可以在学区和学校层面的 CDS 上找到。


印第安纳州毕业生准备成功仪表板由印第安纳州教育部创建,包含 PK-12 年级印第安纳州学生的学校和学区级数据。在印第安纳州议会颁布要求启动学校表现仪表板后创建,GPS 中的信息特别与 大学事务 包括 FAFSA 结业和就业/入学(在印第安纳州就业或在预期毕业一年后在印第安纳州公立高等教育机构就读的学生的百分比)。