We seek to study through research the effectiveness of our program at advancing educational attainment in Wabash County. The Community Foundation Early Award Scholarship Program (EAS), extends the efforts of the Wabash County Promise, (WCP) which has as its aim to enroll grade K-3 students in Indiana’s CollegeChoice 529 plan and to engage students and families in aspiring to and saving for post-secondary education. Both WCP and EASP employ measures based on identity-based motivation theory.
The Community Foundation hypothesizes that the early award scholarship program, which employs multiple incentives to build college savings accounts, influences student identity, aspirations, school outcomes, and post-secondary preparedness. Through research we seek to understand under what conditions and for whom the program is effective, as well as examine the program mechanics and relationship of assets (529 accounts) incentives, identity and school outcomes. The proposed research topics are provided in order of priority.