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Cayuga Community College now has additional resources to help students ride out unforeseen financial hardships and emergencies. Students can apply for grants to help cover unexpected expenses, which will allow them to return to their academics as quickly as possible, with the goal of keeping more students on track toward graduation.
Donations from the Gerstner Family Foundation and the Heckscher Foundation for Children support the Student Emergency Grant program at Cayuga that is part of a SUNY pilot program with seven SUNY campuses. “SUNY recognizes that students are not impervious to crises and we want to do all we can to support students when a situation arises that will have a lasting impact on their ability to complete college,” said SUNY Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson.
“Many of Cayuga’s students are balancing multiple life priorities while enrolled in college,” said Dr. Brian M. Durant, President of Cayuga Community College. “These emergency grants will be vital to keeping our students enrolled during a time of crisis.”
A Student Emergency Fund Committee will evaluate each application, and qualified expenses will be paid on the student’s behalf. Emergency aid will be provided to help students who face an unexpected need, such as medical emergencies, natural disasters, domestic violence, theft, loss of employment, homelessness or threat of eviction. Examples of eligible expenses include rent, utilities, clothing, furniture, medical expenses, backup childcare, backup transportation, and replacement of stolen items needed for school. “These funds will increase our resources and support students to increase the likelihood of persistence and ultimate goal completion,” continued Dr. Durant.
“The Cayuga County Community College Foundation is very appreciative of both the Gerstner Family Foundation and Heckscher Foundation for Children, as well as the SUNY Impact Foundation. Their leadership will help us meet the needs of those students who may not be able to continue at Cayuga because of an unforeseen emergency,” said Guy Cosentino, Executive Director of the Cayuga County Community College Foundation.