The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), the nation’s leading organization focused on promoting entrepreneurship through community colleges, has chosen the Fish Family Foundation and the Herb and Maxine Jacobs Foundation to receive NACCE’s 2022 Lifetime Achievement Award. The award recognizes both foundations’ entrepreneurial mindset and commitment to equity, demonstrated through their respective roles in the expansion of the “Learn & Earn” program (L&E) at Bunker Hill Community College(BHCC) in Boston, MA.
The award was announced today during NACCE’s annual conference in Boston, where NACCE celebrated its 20th anniversary this year. NACCE was founded on the campus of Springfield Technical Community College in Springfield, MA in 2002.
About Learn & Earn
BHCC’s Learn and Earn Program promotes equity in the types of internships offered to students, how they are recruited and placed, and which students can participate. In 2017, the Fish Family Foundation approached BHCC to consider expanding the L&E program to non-profits. The program had been successful but was limited in terms of student participation and corporate involvement. The foundation funded a pilot with a commitment to further fund the program based on the results, including sustainable funding from other philanthropic sources.
The Herb and Maxine Jacobs Foundation expressed interest in funding a program that would lead community college graduates to meaningful jobs and careers. Together, these two funders enabled BHCC to establish a program that increases opportunities for all students. With funding secured, the L&E staff expanded and refined its recruitment efforts, changing the model to be more proactive and including personal email outreach to students who took courses with skills aligned to specific jobs. In addition to promoting equity in the types of internships offered and how students are recruited, the program exposes BHCC students to a broad segment of businesses, especially those that could not otherwise afford to pay intern salaries.
“Together, these two funders enabled BHCC to expand opportunities to all students,” said Rebecca Corbin, Ed.D., president and CEO of NACCE. “The inclusion of students and access to education and entrepreneurial pursuits are part of NACCE’s founding principles, and we wholeheartedly embrace and acknowledge the diligence and generosity of both of these prestigious foundations.”
Fish Family Foundation Director of Strategic Initiatives Jennie Segel represented the foundation at the award ceremony.
“The Fish Family Foundation has long been a supporter of the incredible work at Bunker Hill Community College,” said Segel. “We focus our philanthropy on providing opportunities for underserved populations, especially immigrants, who are often left out of the networks and job opportunities of their peers. This program strengthens the sector by introducing enthusiastic students to the critical work done by non-profit organizations. We were lucky to have a partnership with BHCC president Pam Eddinger and others at the college who listened to our ideas and found ways to turn them into meaningful programs.”
Accepting the award on behalf of the Herb and Maxine Jacobs Foundation, was Austin Gilliland, dean of BHCC’s Division of Professional Studies.
“The Jacobs Foundation believes that vigorous innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit are key elements in strategies to help historically marginalized community college students succeed in 21st century careers,” said Jill Jacobs, a trustee of the Jacobs Foundation. “Paid internship programs such as Learn & Earn provide irreplaceable learning experiences as well as mentoring and networking for students embarking on their new careers. We are honored to be chosen for this award, but truthfully, we believe the credit should go to President Eddinger and her excellent team who make these programs such a success.”
“On behalf of Bunker Hill Community College, I want to congratulate the Herb and Maxine Jacobs Foundation and the Fish Family Foundation on this well-deserved recognition. We are honored to partner with both foundations to bring high-quality, equitable, and living-wage earning internships to community college students,” said Pam Eddinger, Ph.D. “These foundations recognize that the chance to learn and earn provides a critical boost to our students and employers seeking skilled, motivated, and educated workers.”
“NACCE’s Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes inventive leadership and dedication to local communities and is presented to individuals and organizations that have played a pivotal role in the community through their support of civic and philanthropic activities,” said Corbin. “This year’s selection of these two foundations is based on the many contributions they have made to students and the local communities served by the college.”
NACCE is an organization of educators, administrators, presidents, and entrepreneurs focused on igniting entrepreneurship in their communities and campuses. NACCE has two main goals: to empower college leaders to approach the business of running a community college with an entrepreneurial mindset and to augment the community college’s role in supporting job creation and entrepreneurs in their local ecosystems. NACCE has over 340 member colleges, representing nearly 2,000 members and approximately 3.3 million students. For more information, visit www.nacce.com. Follow us on Twitter at @NACCE, like us on Facebook, and join our LinkedIn group.
About Bunker Hill Community College
Bunker Hill Community College is the largest community college in Massachusetts, enrolling approximately 18,000 students annually. BHCC has two campuses in Charlestown and Chelsea, and a number of other locations throughout the Greater Boston area. BHCC is one of the most diverse institutions of higher education in Massachusetts. Sixty-five percent of the students are people of color and more than half of BHCC’s students are women. The college also enrolls nearly 600 international students who come from 94 countries and speak more than 75 languages. For more information, visit www.bhcc.edu.