For many, obtaining an education is a luxury in and of itself. For the privileged few provided the opportunity to attend college, the struggles can oftentimes appear insurmountable. With the rising costs of tuition and the associated costs of housing, meal plans, organizational fees and fees such as caps and gowns, many are required to sacrifice a balanced and healthy college experience by taking on loans and various forms of employment.
Although the needs are great, college students at our very own school are not provided enough accessible sources of funding in order to allow them to become fully immersed in the Rollins mission of global citizenship and responsible leadership. The Student Support Foundation at Rollins is a new student-run initiative housed in the Office of Community Engagement that looks to work toward filling this need.
The Student Support Foundation operates as a student philanthropy club in high schools and universities across the nation and was founded in 2003 at Olympia High School in Orlando with the gracious support of the Morgridge Family Foundation. Once a club is sponsored on a campus, interested students are tapped to decide the greatest needs in their communities and are responsible for creating and following their tailor-made bylaws. The Morgridge Family Foundation annually distributes $4,000 to each club. Once funding is received, club members begin to receive grant requests covering various need areas from clubs, individuals, teachers and school staff. Each club has 100 percent ownership of their grants, guidelines and meetings.
This semester, students in need of financial support at Rollins have demonstrated overwhelming interest in the Student Support Foundation as the organization received over nine applications during the first week of operation. Although there is not much time left in the academic year, the club has been approved for continued funding during the entire 2012-2013 academic year. The Student Support Foundation provides a tremendous opportunity for any interested students to become involved as either a general member or officer in the organization and be empowered to make significant financial decisions for the greater good of their peers and community.
Moving forward, the Student Support Foundation looks to become an integral part of the college’s social fabric in coordination with the student body, faculty, staff and administration. The Foundation looks to meet the most immediate short-term needs of students and to sponsor wide-reaching student, staff or faculty-led initiatives that look to provide a greater benefit for the Rollins community with a special emphasis on community engagement and sustainability initiatives. If you are interested in becoming involved with the Student Support Foundation or have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact myself, Lucas Hernandez, at firstname.lastname@example.org.