TIME: For Immediate Release
DATE: June 6, 2022
CONTACT: John Tompkins, Communications Coordinator
(281) 756-3551 office
SUBJECT: ACC Foundation Grant to Assist Incarcerated Students
PHOTOS: File photo
(This is part of a series of stories on the Innovative Initiative Grants awarded by the ACC Foundation)
ACC Foundation Grant to Assist Incarcerated Students
A recent grant awarded to the Alvin Community Collee TDCJ program will help students currently incarcerated to overcome obstacles to their education.
The ACC Foundation awarded a $2,000 Innovative Initiative Grant to help students in TDCJ pay for supplemental scholarships and transcript fees.
“Our students have a barrier where sometimes they cannot continue beyond the first semester without their transcripts from their previous institution,” said Chakoa Jefferson, TDCJ program director. “We will now be able to cover that fee for them.”
The grant was among nearly $18,000 awarded as part of the Innovative Initiative Grant program from the Foundation. They are designed to encourage, facilitate, recognize and reward innovative and creative approaches to fulfill the mission of the college. The grants will be used for the 2022-23 academic year.
The TDCJ grant will also help pay for a student’s last semester because many times, when they are a course from completing their program, they cannot secure Financial Aid.
“Sometimes they have one class remaining, Pell cannot cover that tuition unless they take at least two courses,” Jefferson said.
The grant from the Foundation will benefit at least 25 students.
TDCJ studies have shown that the rate of recidivism, or chance of return to prison, greatly declines as an offender’s educational level increases. Offenders, on average, have less than a seventh-grade education.
ACC offered the first college classes to inmates at the Texas Department of Corrections in 1965. ACC was the first institution of higher education in Texas to offer college programs at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. In 2016, ACC was one of 67 colleges throughout the United States to be chose to participate in the Second Chance Pell program, which provides grants to inmate students.
There are approximately 450 students currently enrolled in courses at TDCJ.
To learn more about the Foundation, visit www.alvincollege.edu/foundation or call 281-756-3600.