Getting Smart Names JKCF As One of 20 HigherEd Innovators


Getting Smart, an education-based blogging, consulting, publishing, and speaking organization, has named the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation in its second annual Smart List of HigherEd Innovators.

The list was announced on November 21, 2014, and serves to acknowledge people and organizations who lead the way towards making college possible for all students. The awards are divided into five categories: platforms, premium innovators, low-cost & competency-based, program management, and support organizations. The Foundation falls into the last category alongside Educause and Lumina Foundation.

As the largest scholarship foundation in the country, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation is dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. Because we believe that high-potential, low-income students will excel educationally when given the resources to develop their talents, the Foundation supports exceptional students from elementary school to graduate school through scholarships, grants, direct service, and knowledge creation and dissemination. Founded in 2000, the Foundation has awarded $125 million in scholarships to 1,800 students, and $79 million in grants to organizations that support our mission.

The entire list of recipients for the award is as follows:


Coursera: 10 million learners, 846 courses from 114 universities
edX: 94 current courses, 163 beginning soon, 106 archived with 56 universities
Udacity: about 50 courses
Instructure: Canvas LMS and open courses on
Echo360: active learning
Fidelis education: relationship management

Premium Innovators

Minerva: next gen university for the world’s brightest students
Olin College: a new kind of engineering education

Low-Cost & Competency-Based

Western Governors University: pioneers in competency-based credits
StraighterLine: affordable gen-ed courses
Arizona State: the most innovative public university
SNHU and College for America: online and competency-based innovators
Degreed: credit for what you know and can do

Program Management

American Honors: affordable path to brand name degree for low income students
Embanet & Propero: Pearson’s online and low cost gen-ed solution
2U: supporting innovative brand name graduate programs
Bisk Education: taking higher education online

Support Orgs

Educause: the highered edtech folks & host of Next-Gen Learning Challenges
Lumina: redesigning higher education
Jack Kent Cooke Foundation: supporting talented low income students

We thank Getting Smart for its recognition of our work supporting talented low-income students. Please read the full announcement here.