Foundation provides relief

When the pandemic first broke out last March and April, there was a lot of uncertainty in the lives of many, including the students at JJC. That’s when the JJC Foundation stepped in to lend a hand.

“The Foundation’s Student Emergency Fund provided gift cards for food, gas cards, the computers for the loaner laptop program and tuition,” Kristin Mulvey, Resource Development Executive Director, said.

The foundation has always been involved in assisting students, whether that be through scholarships or faculty equipment and programs. $700,000 worth in scholarships are awarded to students annually.

“We also provide funds for the Student Emergency Fund that helps students in need.” Mulvey said, which is exactly what happened at the beginning of this year.

Donors are the main source of income for the non-profit branch of the college. Thanks to the help of these donors as well as employees, the foundation was able to raise an extra $33,000 due to “an appeal asking for funds to help,” according to a figure provided by Mulvey.

Applications for the Student Emergency Fund are still being taken, so that support can be provided to those in need. To access, simply google “student emergency fund application JJC” and it is the first PDF link.

The JJC Foundation is known for its work in offering scholarships to students. This assistance includes both students and the campus itself.

Mulvey mentioned how the “Awards For Excellence grant program” assists academics and delivers funds to academic departments that are not in the regular college budget. This money goes into getting new equipment, such as the state-of-the-art projector in the Trackman Projector.

The Foundation also granted $100,000 to JJC’s Smart Start Scholarships. This program has helped 200 first-time students $500 to attend JJC this fall semester. They are also involved in the Completion Scholarship Program, which helps students finish their certificate or degree programs.

Incoming students receive a bulk of the benefits the JJC Foundation provides, however. One student from 26 of Joliet Junior College’s “feeder” high school is awarded a $3200 scholarship. This money goes towards attendance at JJC as soon as a student graduates from their high school.

Scholarships open on the Award Spring (https://joliet.awardspring.com/Dashboard) site Oct. 15 and are available until Nov. 30.

Those posted will be applied towards the Spring 2021 semester, not the current semester. Many of the scholarships posted are “need-based” and require the completion of a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Students must meet all criteria to be considered for a scholarship.

All external scholarships awarded must go through the JJC Foundation. They are equipped with their own Board of Directors to ensure that funds are allocated to where they are most needed.