A United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley Community Impact Grant awarded to the Laurel Ridge Educational Foundation will help students facing challenges meet critical personal needs.
The $12,000 grant is in support of the Helping Hand Emergency Scholarship Fund which helps students facing immediate or emergency needs that could prevent them from completing their education or workforce training program.
“One of the greatest challenges our students face isn’t committing to college, but struggling with financial stability from start to finish,” said Laurel Ridge Dean of Students Amber Foltz. “We know the challenges our students face – cars that break down, lack of reliable childcare, evictions, hunger, and access to mental health care, among other things – are very real threats to completing college.”
Caroline Wood, associate vice president of student services and academic support, said the college is very grateful for the United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley’s support.
“We consider the United Way a great partner in meeting our students in the moment and helping to create momentum to get them to the finish line,” she said.
Roughly 40 percent of Laurel Ridge students served by the college’s Middletown Campus are considered under-served, meaning they fall into at least one of the following demographics: are a minority, are a first-generation college student, are low-income, or live in a disadvantaged location.
Scholarships or emergency cash aid of as little as $300-$1,000 can go far in keeping a student in college longer and increasing the likelihood they will graduate.
About United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley: Since 1946 the United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley has worked to impact the community human care needs that matter most to the people of Clarke, Frederick, Shenandoah Counties and the City of Winchester. United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley convenes the people and organizations necessary to create solutions to our region’s most pressing challenges and collaborates with effective partners. United Way of Northern Shenandoah Valley seeks to serve as the catalyst for community change by supporting over 42 partner agencies in the areas of Financial Stability, Health and Education. For more information visit our website www.unitedwaynsv.org. Follow us on Twitter @UWNSV.