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Notre Dame College has been awarded more than $220,000 from the Choose Ohio First program, bringing the total to just under $1 million received in tuition and scholarship aid for College students in the sciences since the start of the program.

For the 2020-2021 academic year, Notre Dame has been granted $220,119 from Ohio Department of Higher Education for the state initiative aimed at enrolling and graduating more students in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine, or STEMM, programs. This award increase will allow Notre Dame to recruit new STEMM scholars as well as to fund returning scholars. Selection for the program is based on academic qualifications and a demonstrated interest in STEMM.

With this new award, the College has been awarded a total of $971,983 for Choose Oho First STEMM scholars since the program launched in 2012.

“Funding from the Choose Ohio First program allows Notre Dame College to provide student scholarships and supports that result in improved retention rates, and helps students achieve their personal and professional goals.” said Tracey T. Meilander, Ph.D., Marie Goetz Geier Distinguished Professor of STEM, associate professor of biology and Choose Ohio First STEMM @ NDC program director at the College.

The grant, which is renewable based on scholar achievement, persistence and completion, will provide financial aid to more than 26 Notre Dame students, with an emphasis on those studying biology, chemistry and environmental science.

Retention rates for recent cohorts of Choose Ohio First scholars are around 75 for the STEMM disciplines, a rate which is well above the national average of 50 percent attrition.

STEMM scholars at the College engage in scientific research investigations, leading to multiple presentations at state and local conferences; participate in STEMM small group discussions with professionals in the field; and have access to a STEMM living-learning residential community at the College, among other targeted programming.

Recognizing that a workforce trained in STEMM areas is essential for strengthening the economy, the state created this funding source to provide scholarships and support to Ohio residents who wish to pursue degrees in these fields.

The Center on Education and the Workforce estimated that eight million new jobs will be available in STEMM-related fields by 2018. The Choose Ohio First Scholarship Program is part of the state’s strategic effort to significantly strengthen Ohio’s position in world markets such as aerospace, medicine, computer technology and alternative energy.

Under the program, scholarships can range between $1,500 – $7,995. The aid is renewable and may be awarded even if a student is already receiving scholarship support from other sources. Among students selected to become Choose Ohio First scholars, award amounts are determined based upon unmet financial need with all eligible students awarded at least $1,500 per academic year.

For more information on the Choose Ohio First STEMM program, contact Meilander at

October 2019

About Notre Dame College

For almost a century, Notre Dame College has educated a diverse population in the liberal arts for personal, professional and global responsibility. Founded by the Sisters of Notre Dame in 1922, the College has grown strategically to keep pace with the rapidly changing needs of students and the dramatic changes in higher education. But it has never lost sight of its emphasis on teaching students not only how to make a good living but also how to live a good life.

Today, the College offers bachelor’s degrees in 30 disciplines plus a variety of master’s degrees, certification programs and continuing and professional development programs for adult learners on campus and online. Notre Dame College offers NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletic programs for men and women and is located in a picturesque residential neighborhood just 25 minutes from the heart of Cleveland. Hallmarks of the Notre Dame experience include stimulating academics, personalized attention of dedicated faculty and staff, and small class sizes.

Notre Dame College is located at 4545 College Road in South Euclid. For further information contact Brian Johnston, chief communications officer, at 216.373.5252 or