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Jefferson Awarded $116,000 for New Educational Opportunity Program (EOP)

Jefferson Community College was awarded $116,000 to start a new Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) at the College. The overall goal of the EOP is to help low-income New York students complete their educational goals and receive a degree.  State University of New York Chairman H. Carl McCall and Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher announced the award on February 11. SUNY has invested an additional $2.4 million through the Investment and Performance Fund for 16 SUNY campuses to establish an Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) or expand existing programs and provide access to nearly 800 new students. Jefferson is one of only four new programs to be developed in the SUNY system. 

“The Educational Opportunity Program at SUNY is one of our most successful and sought after programs, with more than 30,000 students applying for 2,500 available seats every year,” said Chancellor Zimpher. “Bringing programs like EOP to more students – that’s what our completion agenda sets out to do, and it is precisely what the Investment and Performance Fund can accomplish. We are thrilled to be sharing these awards with our campuses today in recognition of their excellent work, and we hope to continue expanding this impactful program to better meet the tremendous need throughout New York State.”

“We are pleased to add the Educational Opportunity Program to the wide array of support services available to students enrolled at Jefferson Community College,” said Carole A. McCoy, president of Jefferson Community College. “With increased funding available through the Investment and Performance Fund, we jumped at the chance to apply for an EOP grant and feel fortunate to bring this opportunity to our college community. Our goal is to help students graduate or transfer and then transition into satisfying careers.” 

The overall goal of the EOP is to help high needs students complete their educational goals and receive a degree.  Many of these students have financial hardship, need remedial course help or have other barriers in their academic career that can jeopardize their success.  86% of first-time full-time enrolled students at Jefferson would qualify for the program. JCC plans to serve 80 eligible students in the first year.  The EOP will align with the successful TRiO/Student Support Service (SSS) program at Jefferson and will enable to the college to serve even more high needs students.  The TRiO program serves 160 students each year.  

“We are grateful for the opportunity and ability to help more high needs students at Jefferson,” said Betsy D. Penrose, Jefferson’s vice president for students at Jefferson. “This EOP, coupled with our existing federal TRiO Student Support Services program, strengthens assistance to Jefferson students who are most at-risk to not graduate.”

One of the services planned to help these students include the freshman summer experience program easing students' transition to college, building a supportive EOP cohort and preparing students to persist through graduation. There will be sessions will be devoted to academic preparation, career exploration, workshops in financial literacy and note-taking skills and other team building activities.

Jefferson is thrilled to continue to offer our students programs and services that will guide them through their college education and provide tools for academic success and degree completion.