CVCC receives federal grant to help students in the classroom

Department of Education gives CVCC $1.96M to hire tutors, support specialists

LYNCHBURG, Va. – Some first-time students at Central Virginia Community College are coming into class struggling in math and English.

"Many of them come here and they don't know what they need because they are first time in college. They are students that have not had any college experience or anyone with college experience that come in before them," Dr. Muriel Mickles, vice president of academic and student affairs, said.

School leaders say six out of 10 students are coming from low income households. The college does not have enough tutors to help some of these students. But nearly $2 million given by the Department of Education will change that.

"We have tutoring now; however, we don't have the finance, the fiscal possibilities to right now without the grant to of hiring as many tutors as there is a need for," Mickles said.

With the money they hope to hire nine new staff members, including -- an overall project director who will make sure the money meets set guidelines and goals, a support specialist who will help students through the financial aid application process and at least five tutors.

"I think these impacts are immediate. I think that these initiatives are not limited to the grant. You're just going to see us get better and better and be a little more proactive with the things we do, I think," Kristen Ogden, dean of institutional effectiveness and strategic planning, said.

The school is hosting an open house to give new students an opportunity to learn more about the grant. They will also post job openings soon for those looking to be tutors.