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AETNA FOUNDATION AWARDS $48,500 FOR EMORY MINORITY STUDENT RETENTION STUDY

 AETNA FOUNDATION AWARDS $48,500 FOR EMORY
 MINORITY STUDENT RETENTION STUDY
 ATLANTA, Feb. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- The Aetna Foundation has awarded a $48,500 grant to Emory University to fund a comprehensive study of school's academic support programs for minority students. The findings of the one-year study will determine the best way to coordinate and oversee programs, evaluate the overall effectiveness of existing programs, and determine whether additional programs are needed to support minority students.
 Don McCarthy, Aetna's Atlanta resident vice president, said the Aetna Foundation is also making grants of $50,000 each to Xavier University of Louisiana and the University of Pennsylvania to help improve the retention of minority students at those schools. "The Aetna Foundation has allocated substantial resources to improving minority representation in higher education for many years," McCarthy said. "But even where minority enrollment has increased, the needs of minority students are often not addressed, leading many students to drop out. As a company, Aetna believes that the talent and potential of these students must be fully developed if the nation is to be economically competitive."
 Emory University has a total enrollment of 9,400 students, 13 percent of whom are minorities. Emory College, the largest academic component with 4,200 students, has a minority enrollment of 9.5 percent. Currently, a variety of academic support services exist at Emory for both high school and college students. These include programs to increase interest and performance among minority mentorship programs through the Office of Multicultural Programs and Services, and programs aimed at preparing high school minority students to enter college and pursue degrees in math, science, and teaching.
 All of these programs operate independently and are linked only by informal collaboration among program directors. This evaluation will give Emory direction on how to best coordinate the programs and make them the most effective on student performance.
 "The support of the Aetna Foundation for this study ensures that access for a diversity of students, both economic and academic, is the very best it can be," said David Bright, dean of Emory College.
 The Aetna Foundation, Inc. is an independent, separately incorporated charitable organization, funded solely by the Aetna Life and Casualty Company.
 -0- 2/3/92
 /CONTACT: Don McCarthy, 404-841-6880, or Gary Frank, 203-273-4788 of Aetna/ CO: Aetna Foundation ST: Georgia IN: INS SU:


TM-PB -- NE012 -- 6329 02/03/92 16:29 EST
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Date:Feb 3, 1992
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