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The Ohio Department of Higher Education has awarded Notre Dame College its largest Choose Ohio First (COF) grant—nearly $900,000—bringing the total to just under $2 million received in tuition and scholarship aid.

The COF program provides tuition assistance, internships and co-curricular programs for students at the College majoring in science and mathematics.

Notre Dame’s newest award for the 2021-2022 academic year will provide $706,027 over five years to recruit and support each annual cohort of new students majoring in biology, chemistry, math and math education. The grant includes a supplemental award of $186,581 to support current COF scholars who are completing their degrees.

This new COF award of $892,608 nearly doubles the nine-year total the College has received since 2011 to $1,864,591 overall. COF is an initiative of the Ohio Department of Higher Education aimed at enrolling and graduating more students in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine, or STEMM, programs.

More than 50 Notre Dame students will benefit from this recent funding, which gives the College resources 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. Each student’s scholarship, which ranges from $1,500-$7,995 each year based upon unmet financial need, is renewable through graduation based on scholastic achievement and persistence.

Retention rates for recent cohorts of COF scholars at Notre Dame are 80 percent 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 annual 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.

Cleveland-are companies including Alloy Bellows, Medical Mutual, Synthomer and Frantz Medical Manufacturing will provide internships to COF Scholars.

Recognizing that a talented STEMM workforce is essential for strengthening Ohio’s economy, the state launched the Choose Ohio First program in 2011 to provide scholarships and support to Ohio residents who wish to pursue degrees in these fields.

Awards to higher education institutions in subsequent years are subject to appropriations by the Ohio General Assembly, performance and budget modifications.

For more information about NDC’s Choose Ohio First STEMM program, email David Kirby, assistant professor of chemistry, at dkirby@ndc.edu.

April 2021

About Notre Dame College

Notre Dame College is a private, Catholic, liberal arts college in South Euclid committed to teaching students how to make a good living and live a good life. Founded by the Sisters of Notre Dame in 1922, 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. For more information, visit www.notredamecollege.edu.