Bunker Hill Community College

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Foundation News

News from 2019-2020

COVID – 19 Student Relief Fund

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March, 2020, Bunker Hill Community College’s student population experienced enormous challenges, due to the switch to remote and on-line learning, a burgeoning unemployment rate, and lack of access to College resources. To help our students continue to succeed, the BHCC Foundation established the COVID-19 Student Relief Fund. This flexible fund enables the College to respond quickly to student needs caused by or resulting from the COVID-19 crisis. To date, the following Foundations and individuals have supported COVID-19-related needs:

  • The Paul and Phyllis Fireman Charitable Foundation, the City of Boston GRAD Last Mile Fund supported by the Frieze Family Foundation, and the BHCC Foundation provided $250,000 for the purchase of Chromebooks, laptops, and other technology to assist students with on-line learning;
  • The Barr Foundation and Barbara and Amos Hostetter contributed $250,000 and Combined Jewish Philanthropies contributed $20,000 to support students not eligible for assistance from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
  • Numerous individual made gifts ranging from $5 to $5,000 and totaling $25,000 for emergency student assistance.

 Scholarship Support

Although the BHCC Foundation was unable to host its annual gala this year due to the COVID-19 crisis, our generous donors continued to support our “total cost of attendance” scholarship program with more than $162,000 in sponsorships. In addition to the current use funds raised for the gala scholarship awards, the BHCC Foundation raised $152,000 to endow permanently this successful scholarship initiative. Funds for the newly created “BHCC Foundation Promise for Student Success Scholarship” were matched through the Commonwealth Public Higher Education Endowment Incentive Program. The incentive matched $1 for every $2 donated to any endowed fund by a donor who had not given to endowment in the past.

The BHCC Foundation ultimately raised $277,118 in qualifying donations, earning $138,569 in incentive funds in support of endowments for student assistance. In addition to The Promise Scholarship, newly endowed scholarships include:

  • The Sophie S. Fifield Memorial Scholarship, for a first generation student majoring in Visual and Media Arts
  • Nick Chau and Wey Chin Legacy Scholarship, for academically motivated students who also have served the community in some way
  • The Nye Family Scholarship, to help cover total cost of attendance for students with strong academics and deep financial needs
  • The Village Scholarship, for students juggling the demands of parenthood along with attending college
  • Merfeld-Friedman Family Scholarship, for students who are not eligible to apply for federal financial assistance
  • Chief Charles G. Voke Memorial Scholarship, for graduates of Chelsea High School who enroll full-time at BHCC.

 Generous donors also created named scholarships for current use with gifts of $5,000 or more.  These include:

  • Heather and Robert Keane Family Foundation Scholarship
  • JobGet Grit Scholarship
  • George H. Tilton Scholarship
  • Florence and Norman Simon Memorial Scholarship

Expansion of Learn and Earn Internship Program

BHCC’s award-winning paid internship program, Learn and Earn, has expanded to include non-profits, small businesses and civic organizations.  Beginning with a pilot project at one community health center, funded by the Fish Family Foundation, there are now 15 partner sites employing approximately 50 interns. Following the successful pilot, the Fish Family Foundation contributed more than $100,000 to the expansion of Learn and Earn.  Additional funders include Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, the John H. and H. Naomi Tomfohrde Foundation and the Herb and Maxine Jacobs Foundation, which has contributed $350,000 to the expansion.  As a result of these generous donors, BHCC students can pursue a broad range of experiential learning opportunities, earning academic credit and a salary.

News from 2018-2019

2018 BHCC Foundation Gala Salutes Monuments of Student Success

The 2018 annual gala was held on April 26, 2018, in the Gymnasium at BHCC.  Guests feasted on delicious food prepared and served by Culinary Arts & Hospitality students and enjoyed musical and vocal entertainment provided by students in the Performing Arts Department and the BHCC Jazz Quintet.  A conversation with recipients of the Foundation Gala Scholarships was emceed by WGBH Correspondent, Kirk Carapezza.  This year’s gala brought the total raised for student scholarships to more than $1.0 million.  See the event recap.

BHCC Participates in Research on Impacts of Hunger Intervention

Thanks to generous funding from The Boston Foundation and the Kresge Foundation, Bunker Hill Community College is participating in a multi-year study on assessing the impact of a food voucher program on the success of students who are food insecure.  BHCC is one of three community colleges involved in the study which has been undertaken by a team of investigators led by Sara Goldrick-Rab, Professor of Higher Education Policy & Sociology at Temple University, and Founder of the Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice in Philadelphia.

BHCC Foundation Receives Major Grants for Open Educational Resources Initiative

The College’s initiative to lower textbook expenses for students received a boost through the generosity of The TJX Foundation and an anonymous benefactor.  The combined gifts of nearly $100,000 enabled the College to expand the Open Educational Resources Initiative, which aims to create entire courses that utilize OER materials. With initial support from Achieving the Dream, faculty members began designing courses using OER materials for the Spring 2017 semester.  These latest gifts allowed the program to expand and it is now possible for a student to complete an associate degree in liberal arts without purchasing a single textbook.

2018 Alum Endows Scholarships

A new scholarship will soon be available for education majors at BHCC.  A 2018 graduate – who wishes to remain anonymous - endowed the scholarship in memory of an aunt who devoted her life to helping children with special needs, particularly those on the autism spectrum.

Chelsea High School Class of 1966 and Susan Soule Clark Memorial Scholarship Awarded

Members of the Chelsea High School Class of 1966, in honor of their 50th reunion, engaged in a fundraising campaign to endow a scholarship at BHCC for graduates of Chelsea High School.  Two students were awarded the scholarship this past academic year; one graduated and the other is on track to do so in 2019.  The scholarship also honors the legacy of Susan Soule Clark, who founded Choice through Education in 1974 and developed the oldest and most successful Upward Bound program in the nation, enabling thousands of Chelsea High School students to pursue higher education.

Support for Single Stop

Single Stop USA is a major initiative at Bunker Hill Community College, which connects students to state and federal financial resources and local community services. The aim is to help students surmount economic barriers, continue with their education, and move towards economic mobility with the ultimate goal toward ending cycles of poverty. During this past year, the BHCC Foundation received close to $60,000 from individual donors – most of whom asked to remain anonymous – for support of hunger, transportation and other critical financial needs of students.

News from 2017-2018

Bunker Hill Community College Awarded $100,000 for C-Town Business Pathways Program

Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) received a $100,000 grant from Cummings Foundation’s $100K for 100 program in support of the C-Town Business Pathways program. A pilot program for students at Charlestown High School, the C-Town Business Pathways Program is a collaboration between BHCC, BUILD, Charlestown High and the Boston Private Industry Council. The program provides high school students the opportunity to earn up to 30 college credits–at no cost to the student–toward an associate degree in business. Read the press release.

Bunker Hill Community College Foundation Awarded Grant for One Solid Meal Program

Bunker Hill Community College Foundation received a $14,000 Economic Mobility Grant from Bank of America Charitable Foundation to expand the number of participants in its One Solid Meal (OSM) Program. Funded by a group of private donors, OSM began as a pilot during the spring 2016 semester to address hunger and food insecurity, a critical problem at the College and one that affects students at community colleges throughout the U.S. A recent report released by the Wisconsin HOPE Lab and the Association of Community College Trustees found that two thirds of students struggle with food insecurity and one third are regularly hungry. At Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC), the same study showed that 56 percent of BHCC students experience low or very low food insecurity. Read the press release.

BHCC Foundation Annual Gala Funds Student Scholarships

Emceed by WBUR’s Meghna Chakrabarti, host of Radio Boston, the Bunker Hill Community College Foundation hosted its 2017 Annual Gala on April 20, 2017, at RSM US LLP. Celebrating its home in Charlestown, Massachusetts, and recognizing the enormous feats of its students, the theme of this year’s gala was “Monuments of Student Success.” The Bunker Hill Monument stands as a symbol of overcoming challenges and achieving a dream. A degree from BHCC is one of many steps on our students’ ascent to the top. Since 2014, every dollar raised at the BHCC Foundation annual gala has funded scholarships to cover financial need not met by other sources. See the event recap.

News from 2016-2017

First Alumni Endowed Scholarship Awarded

John Narcus, BHCC Class of 2014, recently established the Andrew Graham Narcus Semper Fi Scholarship Fund.  The scholarship is fully endowed and was awarded to the first recipient, Loretta Williams, for fall 2016. This is the first scholarship endowment to be created at BHCC by an alumnus of the College.  Five years ago, John began a 5K run in memory of his brother, Cpl. Andrew Graham Narcus, USMC.  With 850 participants (including 60 from BHCC), last year’s Boston River Run 5K raised the $25,000 needed to endow a BHCC scholarship.  Having received the Trustees Service Award during his final year at BHCC, John experienced firsthand the impact of having a scholarship that enabled him to work fewer hours and to graduate earlier than he otherwise would have been able to afford to do. The 2016 Boston River Run 5K will be held on November 13 with proceeds again benefiting the Andrew Graham Narcus Semper Fi Scholarship at BHCC.  New this year is an optional 3K run, geared to children but anyone can participate.  The BHCC Athletic Department will also be offering pre-race training! More information can be found at: http://www.bostonriverrun.com/

Bank of America Charitable Foundation Awards $15,000 Grant

The Bank of America, through their Charitable Foundation, awarded Bunker Hill Community College a grant of $15,000 to help update equipment for the Medical Technology Certificate Program.  This is the third grant received by BHCC from Bank of America Charitable Foundation to upgrade equipment in classrooms and laboratories in the Allied Health Professions Certificate Programs, which are located on the Chelsea Campus. 

Pearl Anniversary Gala Raises $222,000 for New and Continuing Scholarships

Donations received through the 2016 annual gala are funding academically qualified students whose financial needs are not covered by federal or state loans or grants.  Since 2014, contributions to the Foundation’s annual gala have been earmarked to scholarships and 67 students have received scholarships ranging from $2,500 to $10,000. Two-thirds of these students have already graduated or transferred  and  20 students are continuing their course work.  An additional 15 students will receive scholarships for the first time beginning fall 2016. These scholarships assist the College with one of its top priorities, student completion. Read the full story and see photos here: bhcc.edu/gala 

News from 2015-2016

Rukmini Rao Memorial Scholarship Endowed

Yenamandra V. Rao, Ph.D., Professor and Chair of the Department of Mathematics at BHCC, has fully endowed the scholarship created in memory of his late wife, Rukmini Rao.  Since 2012, this award has provided generous scholarship support annually to two students pursuing an associate degree in Science, Technology, Engineering or Math.  Students must be academically motivated, have at least a 3.5 cumulative grade point average, and demonstrate financial need.

New Scholarships Established by Donors

Two new scholarship funds were established at BHCC by generous donors.  Jessica and Naiff Bethoney endowed the Bethoney Family New Beginnings Scholarship and Doris and Dan Partan created the Gateway Scholarship.  Both of these scholarship programs are designed to help students who may not be eligible for government grants or loans.

Foundation’s Annual Gala Raises $215,000 for New and Continuing Scholarships

Donations received through the 2015 annual gala are funding students through the continuation of the Ruby Anniversary Scholarship program [add the link to the Ruby Scholars booklet] and the establishment of Foundation Silver Scholarships.  These scholarships assist the College with one of its top priorities, student completion. Read the full story and see photos here: bhcc.edu/gala 

TJX Foundation Completes $100,000 Commitment to Student Emergency Assistance

The TJX Foundation awarded its fourth grant of $25,000 to Bunker Hill Community College for the Mary L. Fifield Student Emergency Assistance Fund.  During the past five years, TJX, through The TJX Companies and The TJX Foundation, has contributed $125,000 to Student Emergency Assistance at BHCC, which has helped approximately 150 students cope with an unexpected financial crisis and thus stay in school.

Barnes & Noble College Contributes $100,000 to BHCC Work Study Program

Barnes & Noble College contributed $100,000 to supplement funds available through the College Work Study Program at BHCC.  The program is federally funded but the demand for jobs on campus is greater than the federal resources allocated to the College.  The company’s contribution was designated for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years. Barnes & Noble College manages the BHCC Bookstore and is a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble, Inc.