State leaders joined officials from Indio’s Desert College on Tuesday to celebrate a $1.8 million investment in COD students and a new on-campus food bank.
The funding comes from Governor Gavin Newsom’s #CaliforniansForAll College Corps. The program provides thousands of students in 45 schools across the state with his $10,000 scholarship to pay for their education in exchange for completing his year of service in the community. is a university service program.
Statewide programs target three issues: inequality, climate change and food insecurity.
California Chief Services Officer Josh Fryday said the program is based on the GI bill.
“You serve your community and receive a scholarship to college,” he said.
COD will partner with the FIND Food Bank to focus on food insecurity.
About half of the funds allocated to COD will be used to pay scholarships to nearly 50 college fellows. The other half will help COD and Find Food Bank pay for the new on-campus food pantry that opened in Indio on Tuesday.
Designed to look like a grocery store (minus the price tags), the Pantry is open to all COD students, providing themselves and their families with up to £35 of food per week, You can connect to government resources such as: CalFresh is a monthly food benefit program for low-income individuals and families.
“This is like a prayer answered,” said College Corp Fellow DJuane Nunley.
Nanley, 35, juggles the responsibilities of caring for six children and completing a psychology degree in COD.
Balancing parenthood and school is never easy, but with Nanley’s scholarship and the ability to get fresh, healthy groceries for free on campus, you’ll be able to complete your degree. The ability to provide for a family may become easier.
As a Fellow, he worked 450 hours this year at Find Food Bank, responsible for pantries on the Indio campus, and supervised FIND’s warehouse management, logistics, and inventory systems for its network of 150 permanent and mobile locations throughout the Coachella Valley. I plan to gain experience.
Debbie Espinosa, president and CEO of FIND Food Bank, noted the importance of these skills as employers like Amazon expand into the Coachella Valley and the warehousing industry grows in the Inland Empire.
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Keith Winters, 50, who works as a part-time real estate agent at COD to pursue a business degree, said he wishes the new program was about 30 years old.
“I wish something like this was available when I first went to school in my 20s,” he said.
Winters said he chose a job over an education 30 years ago, but a new college scholarship could help him balance his educational aspirations and financial responsibilities, including a mortgage, later in his life. It helps you find
According to the university’s website, the total annual cost of attending COD for local students living at home equates to about $16,000. This figure includes about $1,300 in tuition, $1,200 in books, $3,430 in miscellaneous expenses, and $9,500 in food and housing. The university estimates that students living away from home will need to budget about $18,000 for food and housing.
Another program, plEDGE, offers recent high school graduates two years of free tuition and fees at COD.
COD alumni and state legislator Eduardo Garcia said he hopes the College Corp scholarship will encourage COD fellows to stay in school and graduate sooner.
“Going to school, working, and possibly having a family and committing to contributing to the family budget is a balance,” Garcia said.
Fellows also include young traditional students like Derrick Tarey, a recent graduate of La Quinta High School.
A business administration student, Talay immigrated to the United States from the Philippines before his sophomore year at La Quinta.
He said the program has been very helpful, adding that he also appreciates the community service aspect.
Talay’s aspiration is to see small good deeds accumulate in the community, such as helping to provide for a family and connecting families to other communities and government services.
Espinosa added that their efforts help keep students from coming to school hungry.
Martha Garcia, COD superintendent and president, said tackling food insecurity was personal to her because she struggled as a single mother raising her son while attending Imperial Valley College. He holds a PhD in Educational Leadership from State University.
“Food insecurity has become a serious and serious problem among college students in our country,” Garcia said.
Citing a recent California Community College study, she said 50% of the 1.8 million California Community College students were suffering from food shortages, and 12% of those had gone without food for at least one day in the previous month. I’m guessing. money to buy food.
COD is one of 18 community colleges participating in the first college co-op class. Applications for next year’s cohort will open soon.
Nearby, CSUSB-Palm Desert is partnering with the state to offer 25 College Co-op fellowships this year. Their fellows work to expand existing partnerships with his three her K-12 school districts in the Coachella Valley, providing mentoring, tutoring, coaching, and after-school activities.
Jonathan Horwitz is in charge of education for The Desert Sun. Contact him at email@example.com or @Writes_Jonathan.