The program, dubbed “#WeGotYou” will cover costs including tuition and fees, room and board and activity fees for the next two semesters. EWC’s announcement acknowledged the economic uncertainty resulting from Covid-19 as well as the barriers that financial burdens can present in higher education.
“Many of our students, their parents or guardians, their grandparents, or significant others are struggling financially due to a loss of income pursuant to a reduction or loss in employment.” President A. Zachary Faison Jr. said in a press release. “As such, we at EWC wanted to provide a way for students to afford to return to our campus and continue their program of study without having to grapple with what for many of them is an untenable and excruciating financial burden right now.”
In 2019, 97% of EWC students received some form of financial aid, with 88% being recipients of the Federal Pell Grant – a program that assists low-resource and low-income students.
The initiative follows EWC’s recent elimination of more than a decade’s worth of net cash operating deficits and the recent influx of $3.5 million in state funding to the college.
“I do not know of any other institution in America right now that is telling their students during these challenging financial times, ‘If you want to come back to school, don’t let finances be a deterrent. We got you!’” Faison said.
Classes for the 2020-2021 academic year at EWC start on Aug. 17. In response to social distancing requirements and health concerns, the college will offer both exclusively online and hybrid face-to-face/online classes to students.
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