Students from Building 21 of the Allentown School District talk with Lehigh Valley businesswoman Lisa Scheller and LCCC President Dr. Ann Bieber at the news conference on Oct. 1.
submitted by Denise Reifinger
High school students from the nine school districts in Lehigh County will have additional financial support to earn a college degree from Lehigh Carbon Community College while still in high school, thanks to funds from the Lisa Jane Scheller Technology Scholarship. The college announced this new scholarship opportunity at a news conference today on the college’s Schnecksville campus.
LCCC’s Early College program allows high school students to take college-level courses for their junior and senior years of high school. At the end of those two years, they graduate with both a high school diploma and a general studies associate degree from LCCC.
Scholarships will be available to high school students who demonstrate financial need through eligibility for free and reduced lunch beginning in the fall 2020 semester and will impact students in the following school districts: Allentown, Catasauqua, East Penn, Northern Lehigh, Northwestern Lehigh, Parkland, Salisbury, Southern Lehigh and Whitehall-Coplay, as well as Tamaqua High School. Scheller scholarships will cover tuition for the entire degree, a value of $3,300.
Previously, Scheller scholarships were available to students from Lehigh Career and Technical Institute and Carbon Career and Technical Institute. This new initiative broadens the impact of these scholarships to allow and encourage students from throughout the county to pursue a college degree. Scheller, a resident of Allentown and president and CEO of Silberline Manufacturing, established the endowment in 2014 to help young people improve their lives and get ahead through education.
Approximately 65 percent of LCCC students are first generation college students, the first in their family to pursue a higher education. Also, 93 percent of LCCC graduates are either employed or continuing their education. Most of these graduates also remain in the area, positively impacting economic development.
Scheller also funded the Roberta and Ernest Scheller Jr. Family Foundation, which provides scholarships to Morgan Scholars, who are graduates of Tamaqua High School, to support them as they pursue bachelor’s degrees.
“The Scheller Early College Scholarships are a perfect example of combining funds from a private donor to leverage scholarships and move students into the pipeline of higher education early,” says LCCC president Dr. Ann D. Bieber. “We know that the sooner students focus on college, the likelier they are to be successful. These scholarships will help pave the way for students and help to eliminate financial barriers to a college degree.”
For more information on the Early College program, contact Jennifer Aquila, director of High School Connections, at 610-799-1120 or JAquila@LCCC.edu.