Lumina foundation breaks new ground in higher ed impact funding
- Inside Philanthropy reports the Lumina Foundation is among a growing group of nonprofit organizations using impact investing — funding socially beneficial causes — to improve higher education outcomes.
- Lumina's current funded projects are around a goal of 65% of eligible Americans having earned a college degree or a professional credential by 2025, and improving retention and graduation outcomes for students most likely to drop out of college.
- Observers question if universities will be able to individually implement some of the funded research and program development into curricula.
It appears that much of the Lumina Foundation's work will be best used by community colleges, which some experts say have an easier time making use of experimental and piloted educational forms over four-year institutions. However, all colleges can consider research and development created in social improvement funnels, because they will be looking to meet the needs of an increasingly diverse student body in the next ten years.
Student populations will soon be older with more minorities coming with very specific financial and learning needs, and for colleges to meet metrics established by the U.S. Department of Education with respect to post-graduate earning and employment outcomes, they will need to work closely with nonprofits like Lumina to ensure that they are on the best path to meeting these new goals.
- Inside Philanthropy What's up with impact investing and higher education