College provides financial support during pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought on added stress for many college students. Those who are also parents or caregivers have been forced to make tough decisions about pursuing educational goals under increasing strain.

For students like Bryan Arredondo of Elgin, that meant using money set aside for college tuition to help cover rent for his family when his mother lost her job. Arredondo attends Elgin Community College, majoring in computer-aided design.

As financial concerns resulting from pandemic increased, ECC worked quickly to find help for students like Arredondo through several measures, including the ECC Foundation’s Student Success Fund. The Foundation rallied its donors and raised more than $220,000 to help students pay for tuition, books, technology access, and even ancillary support for rent, food, health care, and child care.

Arredondo is one of more than 130 students who received help from the fund to continue their studies. Because he was able to continue in his coursework, he also secured an internship that led to a job as a part-time design and project coordinator. Arredondo will transition to a full-time position with the company when he completes his degree in May.

ECC has also received additional federal and state funds to provide direct support to students. While the pandemic has caused unprecedented challenges to many, the resulting increase in funding gives students a unique opportunity to take advantage of more ways to pay for their education.

If you, like Bryan, have experienced economic hardships as a result of the pandemic, ECC wants to help you with the resources and supports you need to be successful. For financial assistance, contact ECC’s Financial Aid and Scholarships office at 847-214-7360. Registration for summer sessions starting June 7, June 14, and July 12 is now open. Fall registration begins May 10.

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