You Can Help Fulfill Dreams

Siatta Davis, left, of the Rutgers–Camden Hill Family Center for College Access, helps Camden students apply to college.

Gifts to Dreams Fulfilled, a Rutgers Big Idea, benefit numerous Rutgers–Camden initiatives that focus on college preparation, affordability, and academic support. The program was highlighted in the spring 2021 cover story “Fulfilling Dreams.” Here is more about the programs that gifts to Dreams Fulfilled will support:

College Preparation

The Rutgers Future Scholars program each year helps to connect 250 low-income, academically promising students from Camden City schools to the promise and opportunities of a college education. Future Scholars receive academic support, enrichment, personal guidance, and mentoring from middle school through high school.

Those who complete the program and meet admission requirements are guaranteed free Rutgers tuition and fees. Camden Ignite is a collaborative education program focused on increasing student achievement in East Camden and North Camden. Through after-school and extracurricular learning, the partnerships serve students in grades 3–8 by promoting academic success, positive social and emotional development, and family engagement. It has served more than 3,000 students since 2011.

The Hill Family Center for College Access prepares Camden students and families for success in college through workshops, support, and mentoring. A gift from Washington and George Hill, brothers who grew up in Camden and graduated from Rutgers–Camden in 1961, established the Hill Center. More than 3,600 students have received counseling since 2011.

Affordability

Bridging the Gap is an innovative Rutgers–Camden program that helps New Jersey residents reduce the cost of tuition up to 100 percent. More than 4,300 students, including 89 who graduated in spring 2020, have benefitted from the five-year-old program that closes the gap between federal and state sources of financial support and the balance of tuition and the general campus fee.

Scarlet Promise Grants are universitywide need-based financial aid awards that range from $500 to$5,000 per year. Students receive Scarlet Promise Grants as part of their comprehensive financial aid packages, and Rutgers also awards the grants for hardship appeals, such as the death of a parent, loss of employment, and health emergencies. Rutgers launched Scarlet Promise Grants in 1991 under the name Rutgers Assistance Grants.

Learning Support

New Jersey Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF), a statewide program that began in 1968, started at Rutgers–Camden with five students and increased to 55 students the following year. It now annually serves about 275 students from educationally and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Students benefit from one-on-one academic coaching, workshops, experiential learning, summer programs, and tuition grants.

TRiO Student Support Services provides services that are specifically designed to increase the retention and graduation rates of first-generation and low-income students. Services include one-on-one professional and peer tutoring, academic coaching, and academic enrichment and financial literacy workshops. Eligible participants receive financial aid and scholarships. The Rutgers Camden Learning Center is a supportive learning community that provides an array of academic support services to assist students in achieving their academic goals. Students receive academic coaching, learning assistance, and tutoring.

The Office of Disability Services assures equal opportunity, access, and participation in the university’s courses, programs, activities, services and facilities.

To learn more about these Rutgers Big Ideas, visit support.rutgers.edu/big-ideas. If you have questions or would like to discuss a gift, contact Scott Owens CCAS’04, GSC’10, acting vice chancellor for advancement, at scowens@camden.rutgers.edu or 856-225-6028.

Posted in: 2021 Spring

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