Having served for some twenty years as a member of the Teagle Foundation's Board of Directors, and since 2010 as the Foundation's president, I am especially pleased to introduce you to the work that we do. The Teagle Foundation supports higher education in the United States, and since its establishment in 1944 by Walter C. Teagle, has devoted the largest part of its resources to issues that are at the heart of today's national educational policy agenda: college access, quality, and affordability. Each of these topics opens into an enormously complex and challenging set of interwoven questions that bear on the future of America's democracy and its competitiveness in a global era. All of the issues have taken on a new urgency as the economy continues to struggle in the wake of the 2008 recession, and as colleges and universities labor with sharply reduced resources and answer pointed questions about both their efficiency and effectiveness in educating students.
The focus of the Teagle Foundation's work for the last several years has been on the quality of liberal education, especially (though not exclusively) at liberal arts colleges. The foundation has become well known for grantmaking programs that support collaborations among colleges for one of two related purposes: developing fresh ideas about the practices and purposes of liberal education, and developing effective approaches to gathering and using evidence to improve student learning. While these programs constitute a significant portion of our work, we also devote considerable resources to the urgent matter of college access for all students, as indicated through our College-Community Connections program - which provides support for under-served communities in our New York City home - and our ExxonMobil Scholarships, the Foundation's oldest grant program. You will find much information about our grantmaking on this website: about how we develop program areas, about our current and past Requests for Proposals, about projects we currently support, and guidelines for our grantees.
In addition to serving as a central source for information about our grantmaking programs, our website also has the equally important function of our website of highlighting some of the latest thinking and best practices in contemporary liberal education. The Foundation has found that sharing knowledge, ideas, and practices provides a dramatic multiplier effect to our philanthropy. Of particular interest to visitors might be publications developed by our grantees, essays written by Foundation staff and others, and a list of additional resources (articles, bibliographies, databases, websites, etc.) that are not produced by the Foundation but are related to its work. A selection of my own writings can be found here.
We hope that you find this website helpful as you seek to learn more about the Teagle Foundation and about the specific issues in higher education to which we are dedicated. Please let us know if you have questions or comments for us, and thank you for your interest in the Foundation.