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University of Wisconsin Madison
Powered by Publics

Julia Michaels
Executive Director
Center for Public
University Transformation
(202) 478-6071

Media Contact:
Mike Brost
Assistant Director
of Public Affairs
(202) 478-6038

Intermediaries for Scale Grant Opportunity

APLU is pleased to announce an opportunity for a group of 14 Powered by Publics institutions to work together with higher education experts to receive high-quality technical assistance, customized programming, and professional development opportunities designed to increase institutional capacity to support student success.

APLU, in partnership with higher education leaders, will facilitate delivery of the services and selected institutions will receive a stipend of $15,000 to support their participation in this initiative. For more information, review the Request For Proposals and Frequently Asked Questions. The application deadline is 8:00pm ET February 19th, 2021.

The services and financial support are available thanks to funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. APLU is one of 13 leading higher education organizations to receive funding through the Foundation’s Intermediaries for Scale investment program. These organizations are working together and with institutions across the country to identify and scale effective practices to increase equitable student success and degree completion.

Fourteen institutions participating in the Powered by Publics initiative will be selected through a competitive Request for Proposal (RFP) process. Selected institutions will work together with APLU and higher education leaders from March 15, 2021 through July 31, 2022. Each institution will participate in a holistic needs assessment of current policies, practices, and campus culture. APLU will then work with the cohort to analyze this information, along with key student success data metrics, to inform the identification and delivery of customized programming, professional development, and technical assistance to the cohort that prioritizes institutional context, supports identified needs, and integrates into existing student success strategies. Learn more about the networks of technical assistant providers here: Every Learner Everywhere, Strong Start to Finish, and the Advising Success Network.

This project is designed to build upon and complement existing work Powered by Publics institutions are undertaking to increase college access, eliminate the achievement gap, and increase degree completion. Throughout this process, APLU will actively share what we are learning across our Powered by Publics community.

Next Steps
APLU will host an informational webinars on this initiative and RFP process on Wednesday, February 10th from 2pm-3pm EST. Register Here

If you have any questions about this new opportunity, you may reach out directly to Lynn Brabender, Associate Director, APLU Center for Public University Transformation, who is leading this effort.

Project Highlights

  • Nearly 125 change-ready universities and state systems
  • 16 transformation clusters
  • 3 million undergraduates

Project Goals

  • Produce hundreds of thousands more graduates by 2025 with an emphasis on underrepresented minority, low-income, and first-generation students.
  • Cut in half the achievement gap by 2025 for underrepresented minority, low-income, and first-generation students while increasing access.
  • Share key data, learning, and effective practices to drive innovation and transformation across the higher education sector.


Four strategic priorities guide Powered by Publics work. They are:

  1. Taking explicit action to pursue educational equity for low-income, first-generation, and students of color.
  2. Committing to transparency by sharing data and monitoring progress toward equity goals.
  3. Developing common opportunities for cross-cluster learning, sharing, and collective action in the thematic areas of Affordability, Holistic Student Supports, and Teaching & Learning.
  4. APLU and its partners committing to invest in institutional capacity through grants and technical assistance.