Nellie Mae

Nellie Mae provides grants to improve education. Bankrate explains.

What is Nellie Mae?

The Nellie Mae Education Foundation, or Nellie Mae, is a nonprofit organization providing educational grants to students in New England. Formerly called the New England Loan Marketing Association, it provided student loans until the early 2000s, when it became primarily a charity that invests in education.

Deeper definition

Founded in 1990, Nellie Mae provides education grants to students of public schools in the New England area. The nonprofit organization’s stated goal is the provide more access to postsecondary education to low-income students. It invests hundreds of millions of dollars toward achieving this goal by giving grants to educators and administrators.

Nellie Mae is currently owned by the loan originator Sallie Mae.

Nellie Mae supports what’s called student-centered learning, which aims to produce positive outcomes based on each student’s educational needs. By using grant money to improve the quality of learning, Nellie Mae hopes to influence educational policy.

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Nellie Mae example

Damien is a teacher in Providence, Rhode Island. He helps develop a curriculum with the school board that meets some of the demands for a grant from Nellie Mae. These demands include programs that improve education for students and center policies on specific student needs that ensure they’ll stay in school. After demonstrating an improvement in education quality, Nellie Mae awards them a $10,000 grant.

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