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North Central News

North Central College receives IBHE grant to address student housing and basic needs insecurity

Feb 01, 2024

North Central College has been selected as one of 10 colleges and universities from across the state to receive funding from the Illinois Board of Higher Education’s (IBHE) End Student Housing Insecurity (ESHI) grant. The College was awarded $129,992 that will be used to support its ongoing work to provide direct support to students experiencing housing and basic needs insecurity.

“North Central College is committed to providing a holistic set of resources to help all students succeed, both inside and outside of the classroom,” said Dr. Jessica Brown, vice president for student affairs and athletics at North Central. “If students are struggling to meet their basic needs for food, shelter and safety, their academic performance will suffer, not to mention their overall health and well-being. This grant funding will help students overcome some of the day-to-day obstacles that can otherwise derail their progress toward a college degree.”

In its grant application, the College detailed the success of several existing programs that have been implemented in recent years to address increasing student requests for emergency funding and support. These efforts include Cardinal Operation Hope and Help, which provides emergency financial support to students for basic needs such as food, clothing, transportation, and healthcare services; and Cardinal Textbooks, a program run by the College’s Oesterle Library that provides students with free access to high-use and high-cost textbooks. The funds will also help the College spearhead additional support services such as the Technology Loan Program, in an effort to make expensive devices such as laptops and graphing calculators available to students.

“No student should have to worry about when they will have their next meal or if they will have a safe place to spend the night,” said Ginger Ostro, executive director of the IBHE. “The ESHI grants will allow institutions to continue to remove barriers for housing insecure students, so they can make the most of their undergraduate experience and focus on their goal of graduating.”

ESHI grant funding is currently available to eligible North Central College students. Students with questions or who wish to apply for funding should contact the Office of Student Affairs at