The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation Awards Tri-C and Cleveland State University $3.5 Million to Create a Continuing Scholars Program

The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation has awarded nearly $3.5 million to Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) and Cleveland State University to create a scholars program connecting high-achieving Tri-C students with CSU’s Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Honors College.

The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Continuing Scholars Program forges a new partnership between the academic institutions in a collaboration that aims to be a national model for honors student transfers between two-year and four-year schools.

“Our Foundation believes in the mission of Tri-C and Cleveland State and is committed to supporting that effort,” said Morton Mandel, chairman and CEO of the Mandel Foundation. “These schools change the lives of students who, in turn, make an impact on the city, the region, the nation and the world. This grant is an investment in all of our futures.”

This academic pathway will link students from Tri-C’s Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Scholars Academy to CSU’s Mandel Honors College, offering a seamless transition as they continue rigorous coursework in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree.

The program will provide students full-tuition scholarships and stipends; summer research workshops and training opportunities; and a peer mentoring network and dedicated academic advisors to guide students through graduation.

“The Continuing Scholars Program established with this generous gift from the Mandel Foundation builds an environment that promises to bring out the best in some of our brightest students,” Tri-C President Alex Johnson said. “This partnership reflects a steadfast commitment to exceptional academic outcomes for the betterment of the community.”

“This significant investment by the Mandel Foundation paves a pathway to success between Tri-C and Cleveland State,” CSU President Ronald M. Berkman said. “The innovative collaboration between the institutions and the new level of student support will lead to honors graduates who will be ready and motivated to transform the world.”

The grant agreement calls for the first group of Mandel Scholars to transition between the schools this fall. Students must have at least a 3.5 GPA at Tri-C to be considered. The goal is to transfer 25 students per year by 2020.

Transfer students will enter CSU as juniors after earning an associate degree at Tri-C. Once at CSU, they will be on course to graduate with distinction within two years.

Collaboration between faculty and advisors from Tri-C and CSU will enhance the student experience and act as a bridge between the institutions. The grant calls for joint curriculum development and enrichment activities to advance studies.

The Mandel Continuing Scholars Program builds upon academic initiatives launched at Tri-C and CSU in recent years through the generosity of the Mandel Foundation.

CSU created the Mandel Honors College in 2014 after receiving a $3.6 million grant from the Mandel Foundation. The highly selective honors program has graduated more than 400 students since its inception.

A year later, Tri-C established the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center — the home of the College’s Mandel Scholars Academy — after receiving a $10 million gift from the Mandel Foundation. The center promotes the study of the humanities to expand critical thinking and leadership skills.

The new Mandel Continuing Scholars Program creates a process where academic talent nurtured at Tri-C can mature at CSU, leading to graduates ready to enter the workforce and assume leadership positions in the community.

The Mandel Continuing Scholars Program grant will be administered through the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation and the Cleveland State University Foundation. Approximately $2 million will go to CSU and $1.5 million to Tri-C.