The Wallace State Community College Future Foundation raised nearly $120,000 for scholarships during its annual fundraiser for the program.
In a typical year, the foundation hosts an annual special luncheon that includes about 600 attendees. This year, the college held the Student Investment Lunch-In, with participants driving through to pick up meals. About 200 meals were pre-ordered by about 30 sponsors from area business and industry, as well as individuals. Another 150 or so meals were delivered to key sponsors.
“We have great supporters who believe in what we’re doing, which is to support Wallace State students and provide scholarships to them so that they can continue their education, start their education or finish their education,” said Suzanne Harbin, vice president for advancement and innovation.
An online auction was held in conjunction with the Lunch-In, replacing the annual live and silent auction. It brought in more than $8,000.
Moreno Valley College (MVC) has recently received five financial awards, all of which will help boost student success.
A $150,000 grant from the Jay Pritzker Foundation will fund scholarships to students who are close to completing a certificate or degree or are transferring to a university. The funds also can go toward emergency financial aid to students.
The grant is part of a $100 million, 20-year pledge the Jay Pritzker Foundation made to the Foundation for California Community Colleges to help eliminate educational gaps.
The college also received $43,234 from the state via California Assembly bill, AB1645, to expand resources for undocumented immigrant students. The bill compels colleges to create an “UndocuLiaision,” a staff position that would specifically assist undocumented students.
In addition, MVC’s Umoja program was recognized with a $16,000 grant and a $10,000 donation from Growing Inland Achievement’s Covid-19 Emergency Relief Fund. Umoja serves at-risk educationally and economically disadvantaged students and provides culturally responsive curricula and practices. MVC has one of the largest Umoja programs in the state.
Meanwhile, the Riverside Community College District Foundation received a one-time grant of $70,000 from the Pritzker Foster Care Initiative. MVC will get half of the award for its Guardian Scholars Program, which supports current and former foster youth exiting the foster care system.
Florida Power & Light Company is donating $1 million to buy more than 1,600 laptops for students to use in rapid credentialing programs at community colleges. Among colleges receiving assistance, the donation will cover around 500 laptops at Miami Dade College (MDC), 445 laptops at Palm Beach State College and about 400 at Broward College.
The colleges expect to have enough laptops for every student who enrolls in the rapid credential programs, which offer an opportunity to obtain high-value technical certificates and certifications in industries such as advanced manufacturing, transportation and logistics, healthcare and information technology, often in 20 weeks or less.
“The hope is that students, upon completion of the program, would then go on and use this laptop as they join the workforce or return to college to continue their education,” said Rolando Montoya, MDC interim president.
FPL’s donation comes on the heels of Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Florida Department of Education launching the Get There Florida initiative, in which they raised awareness of rapid credentialing programs.
Ellucian has selected Hagerstown Community College (HCC) as a 2020 PATH Scholarship recipient, which comes with $20,000 in funding. PATH (Progress, Accomplishment, Thriving, and Hope) awards scholarship funds to institutions that deliver financial help to students experiencing economic hardship due to the Covid pandemic.
The college will distribute the funds to 14 students to cover tuition expenses.
“To be able to fund scholarships to pay tuition balances so students can stay on track with their degree plans – and graduate in the next six months – is an educator’s dream,” said Christine Ohl-Gigliotti, HCC dean of students.
Copiah-Lincoln Community College (Co-Lin) will use a $503,300 grant from the Center for Workforce Inclusion, Inc. to assist older adults with workforce training.
Almost 90% of the grant – which comes via the U.S. Department of Labor – will provide temporary employment to 92 low-income local residents through the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP). This year, SCSEP participants continue to be paid via emergency pandemic sick leave while they stay at home and in many cases continue to receive training.
“SCSEP has been a godsend during the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Jane Hulon Sims, president of Co-Lin, which has partnered with SCSEP for 48 years.
Faculty researchers at Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) have received $85,000 to study infant-toddler teacher training. The grant comes from the Heising-Simons Foundation through the New York City Early Childhood Research Network.
The team’s research highlights the need to improve infant-toddler teacher training through specialized curricula, skill-building experience and improving the credit-transfer process from two-year to four-year programs that lead to early childhood teacher certification.
Through the program, high school students can begin their postsecondary education and earn college credits from multiple programs at the college. RACC has collaborated with 17 area high schools.
“With the average student debt around $30,000, we continue to offer solutions for our students to manage their college debt, save time, and better prepare them for the expectations of college-level course work,” said RACC President Susan Looney.