Education

In 2012, the Fremont Area Community Foundation took a major step toward building a stronger workforce and increasing educational achievement by adopting Goal 2025—a national goal—to increase the proportion of our residents with high-quality college degrees, certificates, or other credentials to 60 percent by the year 2025.

According to The Chronicle of Philanthropy, the nation’s top 50 donors committed $1.6 billion to support a wide range of scientific research initiatives. The foundations investing in scientific research are helping to pave the way for many significant advances that are saving lives, reducing costs of medical treatments, protecting the environment and providing other benefits to individuals and society. Many believe that only very large foundations are leveraging their resources to support scientific research and know little about other foundations that are leveraging their resources in this way.

Immigration reform is a hot topic on the national scene as the 2016 presidential election looms. While no consensus legislation has emerged on Capitol Hill to date, our guests will discuss how funders can play a role in educating policymakers on the impacts of pro and con policies. Get an update on federal Executive Branch actions to implement the President's 2014 Executive Order that focused on cracking down on illegal immigration at the border; deporting felons, not families; and accountability through criminal background checks. Explore what funders can do to promote sensible policies that insure fair treatment of immigrants and their families.

In philanthropy we’ve long known that we play a unique role by addressing society’s most pressing challenges at their root. Our work is distinct from charity – focused less on meeting immediate needs and more on tackling the underlying causes. And we’re well positioned to take risks to figure out what strategies work best to solve social problems, something that companies and other players beholden to greater political and consumer pressures can’t always do.

According to published reports there are some 80,000 foundations in the United States. They collectively expend more than $50 billion each year for charitable purposes. The IRS expects foundation managers to be conversant with the statutes and regulations as they discharge their governance and fiduciary obligations. However, the rules are exceedingly complex, resulting in an unrealistic expectation that all too often is not met.

Ten years ago this month I waddled – enormously pregnant – into a job interview with the founder of a billion dollar healthcare tech company. “I have this crazy idea about education,” he said.