ONTARIO — Malheur County’s Poverty to Prosperity recently received a $25,000 grant from The Ford Family Foundation, and the money is expected to be used for program development and research.

“The Ford Family Foundation actually asked us to submit a proposal because they wanted to support the Poverty to Prosperity project,” said Kelly Poe, Poverty to Prosperity committee member. “We got the grant, and it’s going to be really helpful.”

Poe explained that currently Ontario, Nyssa and Vale school districts contribute money to the career and technical education part of the project, as well as Treasure Valley Community College. Grants then fill in the gaps.

“It’s definitely a patchwork quilt [of funding sources],” Poe said. “We’re constantly looking for funding and applying for funding.”

This particular grant is going to help with research conducted by Stefan Maupin, according to Stephen Phillips, superintendent of Malheur Education Service District.

“[Maupin] is the new career and technical education regional coordinator for the Eastern Oregon CTE consortium,” Phillips said. “It consists of six counties and TVCC.”

The counties include Malheur, Harney, Baker, Grant, Union and Wallowa.

Maupin is doing research for the career and technical education program’s three main areas: welding, allied health and automated control systems.

The goal is to offer these course paths to high school students, and to have the students graduate with some certifications in one of the three fields.

“It is great to get support from The Ford Family Foundation,” Phillips said. “Their contribution is greatly appreciated and will be watched over with the fiscal integrity that it deserves.”

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