National College Attainment Network Grant 

photo of intern speaking to Vice President Harris
LeadMN intern Amanda Schermerhorn shared her story with Vice President Harris on the struggle that rural students face in accessing broadband

A grant from the National College Attainment Network supported LeadMN federal advocacy work this year. We hired a student intern, Amanda Schermerhorn from M State Community and Technical College, to direct our advocacy campaigns around Double Pell Grant funding, support for student emergency grants, and expanding broadband access to rural students. Amanda joined Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel and Secretary Cardona in a press call announcing the launch of the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program and shared her story dealing with broadband in a rural area as a student parent. Then later she participated in a virtual roundtable with Vice President Harris on the digital divide.


LeadMN also partnered with Higher Learning Advocates and Today’s Student Coalition to expand our annual Washington D.C. Trip to include other states. In total we had 175 participants from 18 states, covering 48 unique House districts and 38 unique Senate districts. Student participants attended over 75 meetings.

Get Out the Vax Campaign

LeadMN launched a peer to peer engagement effort to address Vaccine Hesitancy this year thanks to a grant from the Diversity Council, Inc and supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The project is focused on engaging BIPOC communities in five rural colleges in Minnesota. We are recruiting peer leads on the campuses and then hosting a vaccine summit to help campuses develop plans to boost vaccination rates on campuses.

National Voter Registration Day State Captain

LeadMN was chosen to be a state captain for the National Voter Registration Day effort in Minnesota for the second year in a row.

Secretary Simon visits college on National Voter Registration Day
 Secretary of State Simon and LeadMN visit St. Paul College on National Voter Registration Day (photo credit: St. Paul College)

LeadMN’s Voter Registration efforts were targeted at municipalities with elections this year and those with a high number of incoming students. We successfully had forty-nine campus visits- with thirteen during the week of NVRD - and held 166 class presentations at college campuses. As a result, we had over 1,500 conversations and registered over 450 people during NVRD week. We also partnered with the Secretary of State Steve Simon again this year to do class presentations at two colleges. We added ten new partners in the coalition and collaborated with previous partners to recommit to NVRD.