Skip to main content

Rodel Foundation invests in ASU students' real world experience


April 24, 2006

The Rodel Foundation of Arizona has awarded an annual grant totaling $200,000 to Arizona State University through its College of Teacher Education and Leadership. The grant will establish the Rodel Community Scholarship program to connect talented university students with local education and community leaders to develop innovative solutions to the challenges faced by high-needs schools.

The grant will fund approximately 30, $5,000 scholarships each year. The Rodel Community Scholarship program is open to all undergraduate students—not just education students—attending classes at ASU’s West campus. Recipients are selected based on criteria that include a solid grade point average, a written essay and the commitment to work with schools and students in high-poverty areas.

“The Rodel Foundation is dedicated to improving Arizona’s public education system, and this annual grant is a tremendous investment to our university.” said Mark Searle, vice president and provost of ASU’s West campus. “This is an excellent example of a ‘win-win’ opportunity for ASU, our students and Arizona’s K-12 education system."

Rodel Community Scholars are undergraduate students majoring in education, business or other academic programs at ASU’s West campus. Students will be assigned to a local at-risk high school where they will work with education experts to address some of Arizona’s most challenging issues such as academic achievement, dropout rates and education policy.

“The Rodel Community Scholarship will help our students grow their leadership skills while applying real world teaching and business practices to critical education issues,” said Greg Hickman, director, Rodel Community Scholars at ASU’s West campus. “The Rodel program provides students the unique opportunity to hone their skills to become better, more effective civic leaders.”

Under Hickman’s direction, students will work with local community boards, school principals, superintendents, and education administrators to address education related issues. Through research and data compilation, students will develop a comprehensive, multi-systemic plan that addresses these issues, which they will present to educational, community and business leaders.

“The scholars bring a fresh view to the challenges high school students face because no too long ago they were the ones sitting in these classrooms. Yet they found ways to overcome their obstacles and go to college,” said Carol Peck, Rodel president and chief executive officer. “Many are returning to their hometown high schools where they are powerful role models inspiring students to write the next chapter of college success stories.”

Rodel’s vision is to improve Arizona’s pre-kindergarten through 12 public education system so that it is recognized as one of the finest in the nation by 2020. Rodel collaborates with a broad network of key leaders to develop educational initiatives designed to raise student achievement and to assist those engaged in the process of identifying and removing the major roadblocks to achieving healthy schools and communities.

Applications are available in the College of Teacher Education and Leadership, Faculty and Administration building, Suite S200, at ASU's West campus, 4701 W. Thunderbird Road, Phoenix. For additional information contact Greg Hickman, director, The Rodel Community Scholars, gregory.hickman@asu.edu.