GHC Granted $2.2 Million to Support Rural Students

Posted on: Jun, 26, 2024

Grays Harbor College Logo

Grays Harbor College has been awarded the Rural Postsecondary & Economic Development Program grant from the US Department of Education.  The purpose of the grant is to improve rates of postsecondary enrollment, persistence, and completion among rural students through development of high-quality career pathways aligned to high-skill, high-wage, and in-demand industry sectors and occupations in the region.  GHC has received $2,227,500 over 4 years.

GHC serves a mostly rural area with a service district of 3,448 square miles making it one of the largest rural service districts served by a postsecondary institution in Washington state.  This grant will allow GHC to accomplish the goal of enrolling and graduating more rural students by establishing an in-person presence and outreach within rural school districts and adult gathering places.  In addition to connecting with more rural students, once enrolled the program will provide one on one financial aid and academic advising, increased internship and employment opportunities, academic tutoring and support, and regular check ins with the students to determine the best ways to support their academic, career, and personal growth goals. Building sustained, personalized relationships with individual students throughout their college career is a hallmark of the program.

The program will provide workshops on self-determination, financial literacy, financial aid and scholarship opportunities, career development, study skills, and time management.  The program will partner with local employers to create more internships, apprenticeships, and real-world job opportunities for students, as well as host yearly career fairs.

JEB Thornton, TRIO Director and leader on the grant, had this to say, “This is a great opportunity for the college to reach out to the whole community; we are really excited!”