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School Notes: Low-income PCC students to get $1.3 M in services; Students take on the world in storytelling event

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State gives PCC $1.3 million for wrap-around services

Portland Community College will be able to give more help to low-income, first-generation students thanks to a $1.3 million grant from the state.

Authorized by House Bill 3063 — which passed unanimously in the 2015 session — the Higher Education Coordinating Commission released $3 million statewide to community colleges.

In the Portland area, 480 new students will be able to access coaching, instruction and transfer assistance under the Future Connect Scholarship Program. The grant will also boost the Future Connect staff from eight to 13 employees.

Grant monies will also be used to purchase 47 laptops for check out at PCC libraries, and other service programs designed to increase low-income students’ access and completion rates.

Future Connect has served 1,200 students during the last five years, with contributions from the cities of Portland, Beaverton, Hillsboro and other private donors.

Worldly stories from low-income youth

Hear experiences from around the world from students who were unlikely to experience them without the help of Carpe Mundi, a local nonprofit dedicated to giving low-income, first-generation college students a study abroad.

The storytelling event Thursday, July 28 at 6 p.m. in the AirBnB Portland Offices in the White Stag Building is the culmination of the year-long program. The 13 students received mentorship and a semester abroad to places in Central America, South America, Southeast Asia or India.

“The students have worked hard on their stories. Some are hilarious, some are thought-provoking, some will make you cry, but all will remind us of why intentional travel is so

important,” said C. Hansell Bourdon, executive director of Carpe Mundi, in a news release.

Bourdon added that through Portland Community College, the students received more State Department scholarships than any other community college in the country.