Funding roundup

Representatives from the National Council on Workforce Development and JP Morgan Chase recognized Rockland Community College at an award ceremony as one of the grant recipients selected to launch the Money Smart Financial Coaching Program. (Photo: RCC)

Fulton-Montgomery, Mott and Rockland community colleges will each receive $210,000 to develop and launch a financial coaching program. The Money Smart Financial Coaching Program is led by the National Council for Workforce Education (NCWE), an affiliate council of the American Association of Community Colleges, and is funded through a $2.5 million investment from JPMorgan Chase.

The program aims to improve students’ financial health and increase their graduation rates.

Using a financial coaching program launched by Westchester Community College in 2014, NCWE will provide the colleges with individualized coaching and technical assistance; training, guidance and support needed to hire staff; and assistance in building a successful, sustainable program.

Four other selected colleges will join in 2023, affecting more than 1,200 students around the country.

Connecting Minority Communities grants

Dine College and J.F. Drake State Community and Technical College were among the colleges receiving federal grants for the Connecting Minority Communities Pilot Program (CMC). The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) awarded a total of $10.6 million to five colleges to fund internet access and equipment, and to hire and train information technology personnel.

The CMC program is part of the Biden administration’s Internet for All initiative to expand affordable, reliable, high-speed internet.

Dine College in Arizona will use its $2.9 million grant for the CONNECT NAVAJO project, which aims to improve educational and economic opportunity on the Navajo Nation by improving internet access, providing more hardware and investing in IT staff.

Alabama’s Drake State will use its $2.4 million grant to provide access to laptops with broadband access, expand home broadband access for community members and streamline access to student support resources and online courses. The college also will boost access to training for careers in computer science information systems, cybersecurity and cyber defense.


College of the Canyons (COC) will use a $300,000 Perkins Reserve Innovation grant to fund a network technology innovation and improvement project. The grant, awarded by the California Community College Chancellor’s Office, will support the development of three programs: network technologies, electronic systems, and cybersecurity.

The aim of the project is to promote pathways to high-demand, high-wage jobs for students with a focus on awareness/outreach, workforce readiness, curricular relevancy and program excellence. To engage college-bound students, COC will host middle school career exploration camps, bootcamps through Community Education with a focus on eSports, and a marketing campaign with industry and community partners.


A local company is investing $300,000 to establish a scholarship endowment through the Hillsborough Community College Foundation. Bloomin’ Brands is creating the scholarship in honor of the company’s retired chairman and CEO, Elizabeth “Liz” Smith. 

The Elizabeth Smith Endowed Scholarship will provide three full annual scholarships to female students for the duration of their studies at HCC. Priority will be given to eligible students with a major in business operations/management and secondarily to those with the greatest financial need.

“I hope these scholarships will inspire more women to consider a career in the operations side of business, and ultimately result in more female business leaders,” Smith said.


Highland Community College’s Upward Bound program has received a $287,537 grant from the U.S. Department of Education to help more low-income students who will be the first members of their families to attend college. The college will add staff positions and grow programming.

Highland’s Upward Bound programs provide student instruction in literature, composition, mathematics, science, and foreign language — both during the school year and the summer. The program also provides intensive mentoring and support for students as they prepare for college entrance exams and tackle admission applications, financial aid, and scholarship forms.

 “I’ve watched Upward Bound change the lives of first-generation students. Since 2017, HCC’s program has helped nearly a hundred local students find their future paths in higher education or the working world,” said Anthony Sago, director of TRIO Services at Highland. “Upward Bound’s impact reached beyond participants to include their families’ educational, professional and personal goals.”


With a $2 million federal grant, MassBay Community College can equip its new Simulation Center. The center will be a learning and training laboratory for health sciences, early child education, and human services.

The 68,500 square-foot center is expected to open in fall 2023.

MassBay’s grant was awarded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA). The funds are part of a $3.8 million allocation of American Rescue Plan funds from the U.S. Department of Commerce to Massachusetts in support of infrastructure and workforce development projects. 

North Carolina

Randolph Community College’s workforce development and continuing education division recently received the State Employees’ Credit Union (SECU) Bridge to Career Scholarship from the SECU Foundation. That means 30 RCC students will be awarded $500 scholarships to help them earn credentials.


Western Technical College’s agriculture and horticulture programs have received a $50,000 grant from Compeer Financial’s Agriculture and Rural Initiative. The funding will help the programs purchase hydroponic equipment, simulators, models and marketing tools.

Officials from Compeer Financial presented a $50,000 grant to Western Technical College. (Photo: WTC)

About the Author

Tabitha Whissemore
Tabitha Whissemore is a contributor to Community College Daily and managing editor of AACC's Community College Journal.