Finger Lakes Community College is one of five schools across the U.S. to share in a $1.9 million grant to design pilot programs that support rural students and, as a result, drive economic growth.
The grant was awarded by
The resulting project will address a specific area of need among learners and in the local economy. Focus areas will include underserved populations in
Sloane is heading up FLCC’s team in the effort, called the BRIDGES initiative, an acronym for
The FLCC cohort will be joined every few months by
“We are really there to be facilitators to work with the institutions,” said
FLCC was invited to apply for the selective grant.
“We were looking for smart, excited community colleges that are already doing this work in some way, shape or form,” Dougherty said.
Also sharing the grant are the
"These five community colleges bring a diverse group of core team members to the table, from large national employers to local chambers and small business development teams,” said Kathleen deLaski, founder and CEO of
FLCC will receive $20,000 to offset personnel costs related to work on the initiative, followed by $45,000 to help implement the pilot. The latter could be used for costs such as transportation or technology, Dougherty said. The remainder of the college’s share of the grant funding covers the costs of services provided by
The grant funding is provided by
"Over the next three years, this collaboration will surface new insights into innovative models with the potential to revitalize rural economies, prepare rural learners for success in high-demand fields and strengthen the communities served by this cohort," said
Sloane said the effort aligns with FLCC’s strategic plan and initiatives already underway, including a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion.
“In the short-term, we believe this project will enable us to reach into a segment of our community that needs a connection to opportunity, whatever that project may look like,” he said. “The outcome of this will be impactful, meaningful programming that provides sustainable employment.”
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