The DeWitt Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund has awarded $3 million to three programs that help minority and low-income students finish high school and go on to college.
The New York City-based foundation awarded $1.7 million last month to the Education Resources Institute in Boston; $643,600 to the American Indian Science and Engineering Society in Boulder, Colo.; and $628,800 to the CollegeBound Foundation in Baltimore.
The Education Resources Institute will create "education information centers" to help high school students find information about colleges and financial aid, and assist them with their college applications.
The aises grant will underwrite the expansion of a summer college-preparatory program for American Indian students. CollegeBound will support programs that help students apply to college and to award "last dollar" scholarships that fill the gap between aid offers and unmet need.
The Annenberg Institute has named Paul M. Nachtigal the national director of the Annenberg Rural Challenge. Early this year, retired publisher Walter H. Annenberg set aside $50 million for projects targeting rural schools as part of his $500 million gift to the nation's public schools.
Mr. Nachtigal has spent more than 20 years working with rural-education issues. As the head of the Rural Challenge, he expects to identify clusters of innovative schools and link them to a nationwide network. Another goal is to stimulate broader discussions about the future of rural communities and the role of schools that serve them.
Toward that end, one of Mr. Nachtigal's first tasks was creating a publication describing the goals of the Rural Challenge. That publication is available free by writing to the Annenberg Rural Challenge, PO Box 1546, Granby, Colo. 80446-1546.
Groups that target women's and girls' issues have received short shrift from the foundation world, a new report from the National Council for Research on Women concludes. The report urges that these organizations cultivate support by building bridges between women's advocacy groups and more traditional groups like the Junior League, Girl Scout councils, B'nai Brith, and black women's sororities.
Copies of "Who Benefits, Who Decides? An Agenda for Improving Philanthropy: The Case for Women and Girls" are available for $12 each from the National Council for Research on Women, 530 Broadway at Spring Street, 10th floor, New York, N.Y. 10012-3920; (212) 274-0730.