Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation: Opens grant opportunity for Wisconsin technical colleges

Program Designed To Support Disadvantaged Students Through Financial Emergencies

Madison, Wis. — Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation (Great Lakes) today announced a new grant opportunity made available through its Community Investments program. Open to colleges within the Wisconsin Technical College System (WTCS), the Emergency Grant Assistance for Pell- Eligible Students opportunity provides students in need with small grants to address unexpected expenses that too often get in the way of continuous enrollment and eventual program completion.

This grant opportunity is focused on Pell-eligible students, those who have a significant demonstrated financial need and are more likely to leave college if confronted with a financial setback. Through the program, Pell-eligible students faced with urgent, unforeseen expenses can apply to receive small grants—typically from $200 to $500—to cover costs that can get in the way of program completion. Great Lakes’ goal is to help these students remain in, and complete, college and realize the many benefits completion brings to students and their families. The $1.9 million, three-year initiative will also measure the effectiveness that emergency grant assistance has on student retention and graduation, to inform future funding decisions.

“This grant opportunity is yet another way for Great Lakes to gain a better understanding of what works in helping disadvantaged students enrolled in a postsecondary institution complete their program of study,” said Richard D. George, President and Chief Executive Officer of Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation and Affiliates. “In helping students, our goal is to produce measurable results and make a strong case for the effectiveness of such programs.”

Great Lakes is pleased to partner with Scholarship America® Dreamkeepers® to make this program available to WTCS colleges. In addition to paying 100% of the Dreamkeepers administration fees, Great Lakes has worked with Scholarship America to customize the program specifically for the unique needs of WTCS colleges. Each college has the opportunity to receive between $62,500 and $140,000 based on enrollment. These grants will cover both direct funding to students and program administration costs.

“This program is a perfect example of a public-private partnership at work,” said Daniel Clancy, President of the Wisconsin Technical College System. “Emergency assistance can make a real difference in students’ success. It’s great to see Great Lakes step up again to reinvest in technical college students and provide this level of customized support.”

Applications for this grant opportunity can be found online at and are due April 13, 2012.

For more information on Community Investments, visit or contact Amy Kerwin at [email protected] or (608) 246-1785.

About Great Lakes and Community Investments

Knowing that education has the power to change lives for the better, Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation and Affiliates helps millions of students pay for college and manage their student loans. Through Community Investments, Great Lakes funds programs that foster workforce development and improve economic competitiveness by increasing the number of disadvantaged students who start and complete a postsecondary degree or certificate. Since 2006, Great Lakes has committed more than $69 million in funding to programs that share these goals. For additional information, visit