College Nears $1m Goal in Scholarship Drive

River Valley Community College announced recently that it’s more than halfway to its goal in raising $1 million for scholarships for deserving students.

The fundraising drive began a year ago with the arrival of college President/CEO Alicia Harvey-Smith. The “Envisioning a Brighter Future — Year of Giving Scholarship Campaign” aims to improve access to education; according to the college, more than 80 percent of their students receive some form of financial aid. SEA/SEIU Local 1984 member Kim-Laura Boyle said it’s no secret that, for many, cost is a huge barrier to attending college.

“Tuition in our state is high relative to community colleges in other states, and New Hampshire graduates have some of the highest student loan debt in the nation,” she said.

Boyle said that anyone who’s stepped foot on campus knows that River Valley typically serves non-traditional students. The scholarship fund can ease the process for them.

“River Valley students are single parents, people looking to change careers, and often may be the first in their families to go to college,” Boyle said. “Being able to provide scholarship money to these students will help alleviate some of the fear that these students feel as they start the process of attending college.”

The college raised $160,000 at a dinner last year, and it hopes to pass the $1 million mark at a fundraiser dinner this Friday. You can make donations the the scholarship drive by filling out the donation form found here or going online to www.rivervalley.edu.

Boyle said at first, the $1 million goal seemed out of reach, but much has changed in a year.

“The scholarship committee has been able to surprise a lot of people and are well on their way to actually meeting a number that frankly, a lot of people didn’t think would ever happen,” she said.  “While there is still a little way to go before the goal is met, we are all looking forward to the time when the money actually starts being distributed to the students we serve.”

You can find out more about River Valley Community College, including its locations and programs, at www.rvcc.edu.

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