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Colorado Mountain College has been awarded a $2.125 million, five-year grant through the U.S. Department of Education’s Strengthening Institutions program (SIP).

SIP is intended to expand colleges’ capacity to serve low-income students through providing funds to improve and strengthen academic quality, institutional management, and fiscal stability. The grant will be used to strengthen the college’s police officer training programs, nursing labs, and skilled trades programs.

CMC will primarily use the grant funds on equipment and supplies needed to increase capacity for instruction. The grant also includes funds for staff training in providing mental health and academic advising support to students. It will also be used to enhance information technology.

The five-year SIP award will support Phase One of a larger initiative CMC plans to undertake. One hundred percent of the total cost of the five-year phase one project will be financed by federal money with 0% financed through non-government sources.

Colorado Congressman Joe Neguse said “I want to extend my congratulations to Colorado Mountain College on receiving a Strengthening Institutions Program grant. CMC is a vital higher education institution for our state and we are grateful for all they do to ensure all students have access to a quality higher education.”

Dr. Carrie Besnette Hauser, president and CEO of Colorado Mountain College, was elected to the Board of Directors of the American Council on Education, the major coordinating body for the nation’s colleges and universities. Photo David Clifford

“News of this grant is so exciting and timely for our mountain region,” said Dr. Carrie Besnette Hauser, president and CEO of the college. “This SIP grant will allow the college to better serve its students, and to further meet the needs of our communities for skilled workers in essential services like health care and law enforcement. As we all work toward recovery from the recession and pandemic, it’s clear that there’s never been a greater need for qualified, compassionate, and skilled professionals in these areas.”

The funds will allow the college to launch a fundraising initiative to build three nursing simulation labs in Glenwood Springs, Breckenridge and Steamboat Springs.

“In addition to the SIP grant funding, the CMC Foundation is seeking external partners for matching funds to help cover the cost of construction and other needs to transform these new laboratory spaces into learning hubs that will fully empower our students’ success in this ever-evolving digital age,” said Hauser.

CMC’s elected board of trustees has also pledged an additional $1.5 million to strengthen the college’s academic programs, improve administrative functionality, improve fiscal management and strengthen the student support skills of faculty and staff.

For more information about the Title III SIP grant, click here.