The Erie Community College Foundation announced an added round of scholarship money. Say Yes Buffalo scholars and any student who applied for a scholarship, even if they didn't receive one, will get an extra $90 for the fall semester. Part-time students will receive $45.
ECC leaders and Say Yes students gathered on the steps of the downtown campus Thursday morning.
ECC President Jack Quinn noted it has been a tough budget year and they've been forced to hike tuition and student fees.
“We had a tough budget year this year. All community colleges did. All colleges did around the country and certain in this part of western New York,” stated Quinn. “The tuition increase for our student this year is about $138 a year, which is $69 a semester. We think that’s doable, we also know that even the smallest amount of a tuition increase effects many of our students.”
Quinn said the new scholarship project was the ‘brain child’ of Jeff Bagel, Associate Vice President of the ECC Foundation.
The Foundation wanted to help offset the increased tuition and student fees for the Fall semester.
Bagel said they want to invest in students who are already investing in themselves.
“Any student that applied for a scholarship, whether they received one or not, in 2016-2017 is going to get an extra $90 added to their scholarship. IF you applied and did not receive a scholarship you will get $90,” explained Bagel.
The Foundation raised the funds through solicited donations, regional fundraising and its annual signature event. This will be a one-time funding boost.
ECC has more Say Yes students than any other college involved in the scholarship program.
“This will cover the increase in student fees for the 2016-2017 year. This will provide these students with an opportunity that they don’t have to worry about that increase. They can concentrate on their studies, they can make sure they get their books,” Bagel said.