Paid College Opportunities for Agency Staff/Volunteers and COVID-affected Students

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Do you have clients who postponed their college education due to COVID-10? Or are you involved with a nonprofit (employee or volunteer) and want to attend college with half-price tuition? Two colleges are offering free or reduced tuition for students in these circumstances. 

Gateway Technical and Community College (Florence, Ky.) is offering students their first semester free through the Free Tuition Scholarship. The scholarship is offered to new students who have yet to enroll in school, or students who have dropped out or deferred their schooling for at least a year. The deadline to apply is November 15. The scholarship is first-come; first-served, so interested candidates are encouraged to apply quickly.

Strayer University, an accredited online university, is also committed to giving back to the community, offering 50% off tuition to students who work in select fields benefitting the community through The Civic and Community Alliance Scholarship Program including those that are employed by or volunteer at a nonprofit. (Other fields include public service, emergency management and more.)The deadline to apply for the scholarship is January 4, 2022.

According to a recent Cincinnati Enquirer article, generating financial support for college students is more important than ever given the harsh impact COVID-19 has had on students. According to CNBC, 25% of recent high school graduates postponed college during the pandemic, chiefly due to financial hardships families faced during COVID-19. Thousands of students previously enrolled in college were forced to drop out due to economic hardships. Of these figures, students enrolled in community colleges who juggle work, families and school were most likely to drop out. According to Forbes, community colleges had the largest year-over-year persistence rate decline of all institutional sectors (down 3.5 percentage points to 58.5%). Retention rates also declined the most in the community college sector.