SXU Awarded Grant From GEER Fund
Saint Xavier University (SXU) has been awarded a grant from the Governor's Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Fund by the Illinois Higher Board of Education and is one of only nine colleges and universities in the state of Illinois to receive an award through the competitive grant process. The grant is designed to help institutions support students' progress toward degree completion by closing digital equity gaps and providing targeted, academic and social/emotional supports through peer mentoring and other innovative efforts.
The funding originally comes to Illinois from the federal CARES Act and was open to all Illinois public and private/non-profit institutions of higher education holding accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission. The grant was applied for by submitting a narrative and proposed budget indicating how SXU would use GEER monies to lessen the digital divide so that students can progress steadily toward degree completion.
"Governor Pritzker is very attuned to the ways that COVID-19 has exacerbated existing retention gaps for students who are low-income, first-generation and persons of color," said Gina Rossetti, Ph.D., professor of language and literature and project director on the grant.
SXU will use the funds to provide qualifying students with personal technology, such as laptops and headsets, along with the opportunity for all students to benefit from added online tutoring and supplemental instruction in key subjects.
"With the availability of this grant, it is my hope that no student will be in a position where they have to interrupt their time at Saint Xavier because they lack fundamental foundational technology to engage in courses and classwork," said Rossetti.
"The GEER grant speaks directly to who we are as a University. The Sisters of Mercy have long recognized the importance of leaving no one behind, and the GEER Fund extends the Sisters' call to action – guiding all of us who work at Saint Xavier."