Cleveland Foundation’s Fenn Educational Fund awards $90,000 grant to Lake Erie College


Lake Erie College is proud to formally announce the receipt of a grant from the Fenn Educational Fund of the Cleveland Foundation, a charitable organization seeking to enhance the lives of all residents of Greater Cleveland. Totaling $90,000, the Fenn grant will support the long-term sustainability of a new signature program to be known as Pathway to Empowerment.

Grounded in the College’s new mission and vision, Pathway to Empowerment (P2E), which continues to evolve and expand after successful pilot projects, will offer a unique college-to-career approach that further incorporates experiential learning and internships within the educational experience at Lake Erie College.

By way of this program, students will be empowered to reach their full potential through a unique four-phase sequence that addresses skills and characteristics such as learning about their strengths and areas of growth, creative problem solving, development of strong personal attributes, and teamwork.

These efforts are Lake Erie College’s response to the ever-evolving demands for modern careers, demonstrating the College’s commitment to prepare students for successful entry into the current workforce. The funds from the Cleveland Foundation are currently working to provide the tools and infrastructure needed to support P2E for all students moving forward. By expanding programming with an emphasis on internship and real-world learning, P2E will support and grow more personalized support and individualized strategies.

“Labor statistics tell us that a person may have around 11 jobs in a lifetime. What are colleges and universities doing to prepare students for this reality? This signature program is, in part, Lake Erie College’s answer to that question,” said Dr. Bryan DePoy, vice president for academic affairs and chief academic officer. “Individualized and personalized learning is a powerful benefit of our educational approach, and Pathway to Empowerment will add even more to our value as an institution.”

Through the P2E program, students will work with faculty and staff members on a personal level as they reflect on their values and aspirations and gain a better appreciation for their unique skills. Alongside their peers, they will work to develop projects that not only give back to the community but also provide the sort of invaluable experiences that today’s employers demand.

For over 40 years, the Fenn Educational Fund of the Cleveland Foundation has concentrated on promoting and assisting cooperative education and internship programs at higher education institutions in Greater Cleveland. Specifically, Fenn seeks to connect faculty members, students, and businesses in sustainable cooperative education and internship programs that couple classroom learning with hands-on, real world experience.

As the only four-year college in Lake County, Lake Erie College is committed to providing a personalized education that empowers each student to lead a life of significance. To learn more about the academic programming under development as a result of the grant funding, please contact Dr. Brent Robinson, dean of student academic success, at

Back To News