HUDSON — Columbia-Greene Community College has been chosen to receive a $258,000 grant award.

C-GCC was one of seven community colleges in the United States selected by Achieving the Dream to participate in its Building Resiliency in Rural Communities for the Future of Work initiative.

“This partnership will enable the college to build on its momentum of strengthening and enhancing academic and personal supports, as well as narrowing equity gaps so that increased numbers of students will be able to find jobs that pay family-sustaining wages,” C-GCC president Carlee R. Drummer said in a statement.

Drummer said this grant is among the largest private grants ever received by the college.

“This partnership will enable the college to build on its momentum of strengthening and enhancing academic and personal supports, as well as narrowing equity gaps so that increased numbers of students will be able to find jobs that pay family-sustaining wages,” Drummer said in a statement.

The goal of the Building Resiliency in Rural Communities for the Future of Work Initiative is to increase equitable student success by strengthening rural colleges’ capacity to prepare students for careers in today’s economy according to a statement from Achieving the Dream. The initiative is funded by the Cognizant U.S. Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., The Community Focus Fund at the Chicago Community Foundation, Walmart.org, and Ascendium Education Group.

“Rural community colleges have long served as drivers of their communities’ economic and civic vitality, playing a critical role in ensuring social and economic mobility,” said Achieving The Dream president and CEO Karen A. Stout. “As Achieving the Dream works to support our colleges in fostering diverse and equitable campuses, we are mindful of the importance of building a network that reflects the diversity of institutions across our country. This initiative adds to ATD’s experience working with other rural colleges in our network as well as the nation’s tribal colleges and universities, offering new learning opportunities around the role of rural community colleges as workforce and economic development engines.”

The seven colleges selected to be part of the cohort are Berkshire Community College in Pittsfield, Massachusetts;

Clovis Community College in Clovis, New Mexico; Columbia-Greene Community College; Halifax Community College in Weldon, North Carolina; Louisiana State University-Eunice in Eunice, Louisiana; Northwest Mississippi Community College in Senatobia, Mississippi; and Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College in Cumberland, Kentucky.

“We recognize that rural community colleges are anchors in their communities, providing opportunities for learners, employers and the local economy,” Amy Kerwin, vice president of education philanthropy at Ascendium Education Group, said in a statement. “We’re pleased to support this cohort as they exchange ideas on how to initiate large-scale institutional change to prepare and increase the number of rural learners from low-income backgrounds that graduate and enter the workforce.”

Achieving The Dream is a national nonprofit founded in 2004. According to their website they lead the most comprehensive non-governmental reform movement for student success in higher education history. They include network of over 300 institutions of higher education, 75 coaches and advisors, and numerous investors and partners working throughout 45 states and the District of Columbia and are helping more than 4 million community college students have a better chance of realizing greater economic opportunity and achieving their dreams.

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(1) comment

scottmyers

Well, yes! Greene County has 1,300 businesses, only 9 are owned by minorities. Austin, Tx., went through enormous growth. Tech. Then they noticed there were very few minorities in their companies. They've actively reacted and the ratios are balancing. We must do that here. There are two marvelous minority candidates running for the Village of Catskill board, Mercedes Brantley and Andy Gonzales. This is our chance. It's history. It's a history we can make rather than a default that isn't diverse and inclusive.

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