Students Benefit from Recent Donations for SUNY Schenectady Support Services
The effects of the pandemic have been felt in dramatic and devastating ways for so many. During this challenging time, SUNY Schenectady has sought to assist students not only with academic resources, but with support services to help them with basic needs. Recently, the SUNY Schenectady Foundation appealed to members of the College community and friends of the College for financial support to be directed toward vital student support services. Their generosity will benefit students in need through the Student Emergency Fund and the College’s Food Pantry. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to our donors.
Students are facing job losses and financial instability as a result of the rippling effects of the pandemic. The Student Emergency Fund grants confidential emergency financial assistance to students who face unusual and severe financial strain due to a sudden, unforeseen crisis outside of their control; usually a tragic, acute, and isolated event. Recently, the Foundation raised $12,500 from the Capital Region Community COVID-19 Response Fund that is co-led by the Community Foundation and United Way of the Greater Capital Region, Stewart’s Shops, faculty, staff, friends, and alumni, which was matched by the SUNY Impact Foundation, for a total of $25,000 for the Student Emergency Fund.
Dr. Steady Moono, President of SUNY Schenectady, noted the importance of the Student Emergency Fund for student retention and thanked those who serve as vision supporters for students as they pursue their educational goals.
“We are here to offer our students opportunities to pursue their dreams and the resources necessary to help them accomplish their goals,” Dr. Moono said. “They may face obstacles that could seriously impede the journey they are on to completing their education. Thanks to our incredible supporters, we will be prepared to help when needs arise in the coming months.”
Even though the College moved to a virtual learning format in mid-March due to COVID-19, the SUNY Schenectady Food Pantry has remained in operation since that time, providing food staples and necessary toiletries to students. Gus and Magda Mininberg recently contributed $50,000 to start an endowed fund that will help sustain the Food Pantry, taking a long view of student support. SEFCU Foundation also stepped up with a $2,500 matching challenge grant to inspire contributions from new donors, and create a pipeline of future support for the Food Pantry.
Robyn King, Counselor IV, oversees the Food Pantry and explained how the generosity of donors has allowed the pantry to continue to serve students. “One of the main concerns that college food pantries all over the United States consistently have is finding the resources to keep their shelves stocked,” she said. “The generosity of our community partners, and specifically, the creation of this endowment, lessens that worry for the SUNY Schenectady Food Pantry, and allows us to continue to alleviate the food insecurity our students face. Students tell us at virtually every visit how much the Pantry has helped them, and as a result, allows them to focus on their academic pursuits, which exactly reflects the Pantry’s mission statement.”
The Foundation continues to seek partnerships with community members and organizations with a shared vision of robust wraparound support services that can help students persist. Please visit https://sunysccc.networkforgood.com/ to donate and for more information.