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Ivy Tech Kokomo supporters donate $20,400 for student COVID-19 Relief Fund

Miami County philanthropist Rita Jackson puts fund over $15,000 goal

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covid-19 relief fund

KOKOMO, Ind. – Supporters of Ivy Tech Community College throughout the Kokomo Service Area rose to a challenge last month, donating a total of $20,400 for the Ivy Tech COVID-19 Relief fund to assist students hit hard by the pandemic.

Miami County philanthropist and long-time Ivy Tech donor Rita Jackson wrote the check that pushed the fund passed its original goal of $15,000, earning a dollar-for-dollar match through a $500,000 statewide donation by Ivy Tech Community College State Board of Trustees member Marianne Glick and her spouse, Mike Woods.

“During these extraordinary times, we are humbled by the outpouring of support we have received for our students,” said Ivy Tech Kokomo Chancellor Dean McCurdy. “With the match, Rita’s gift, along with those of more than 40 donors who participated in the emergency campaign, means we have $40,800 to address student needs related to COVID-19.”

The COVID-19 Relief Fund is administered through the Ivy Tech Foundation and provides an opportunity to meet needs in a quick and flexible manner.

“I’m just so happy to support this fund for the students,” said Jackson, an Ivy Tech retiree whose generosity in support of Ivy Tech students includes three endowed scholarships and funding a computer laboratory in the new Health Professions Center. “And I’m always excited by matching opportunities! It’s great to be able to double your donation.”

For Jackson, support of Ivy Tech students recognizes one of her core values.

“Education changed my life, opening the way for me to have a successful career that now allows me to ‘give back’ to others,” she said. “Ivy Tech offers that opportunity to so many students who are hardworking and want to prepare for jobs that will help them better support their families. With COVID-19, many of them have lost their jobs and are facing barriers to finishing their education. I’m glad we can help them get that done.”

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Kelly Karickhoff, executive director of Resource Development for Ivy Tech Kokomo, said more than 80 students have applied for assistance in covering the technology costs involved in moving to online courses as well as meeting financial needs for such basics as rent, utilities, car payments, gas, and food.

“With this fund, we are able to address needs not covered by other funding opportunities, like the federal CARES Act, and address them very quickly,” Karickhoff said. One example she cited: a single father with two children as a positive COVID-19 diagnosis. “We were able to cover their rent for the month,” she said. “We were able to take that burden off him – and help the landlord too. These basics provide the foundation for education. Meeting such basic needs is essential so education can continue.”

McCurdy said, “I know first-hand these gifts will be used to make life-changing opportunities for our students. We can’t predict what the weeks and months ahead will look like, but I can guarantee this generosity will help ease the challenges our students face.”

For more information on the COVID-19 Relief Fund and where to donate, visit impact.ivytech.edu/COVID.Relief.Fund .

“Once the $500,000 from Marianne Glick and Mike Woods was utilized, an anonymous donor came forward with an additional $100,000 in matching funds,” Karickhoff said. “These funds are available to all campuses on a first-come basis until this second matching opportunity is exhausted. It’s not too late to support students in Kokomo, Logansport, Peru, Rochester, and Tipton and the surrounding areas.”

Ivy Tech Community College serves communities across Indiana, providing world-class education and driving economic transformation. It is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering high-value degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its communities, along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.

Ivy Tech Community College Kokomo Region serves Cass, Fulton, Howard, Miami, and Tipton counties, including the communities of Kokomo, Logansport, Peru, Rochester, and Tipton.