January 17, 2023 — Earlier this year, PA Governor Tom Wolf announced that $1 million in PA Hunger-Free Campus
January 17, 2023 — Earlier this year, PA Governor Tom Wolf announced that $1 million in PA Hunger-Free Campus grants have been awarded to 28 institutions of higher education and private licensed schools to combat student hunger across the commonwealth. Reading Area Community College (RACC) is among those recipients, and will receive $40,000 in total grant funding.
“Hunger affects far too many postsecondary students across the nation,” says RACC President Dr. Susan Looney. “The PA Hunger-Free Campus designation and grant funding will help provide RACC students with access to healthy food so they can stay focused, learn and graduate.”
Postsecondary institutions that received a PA Hunger-Free Campus+ designation implemented additional innovative solutions to address student hunger and other basic needs for their campus community in conjunction with demonstrating additional criteria. Examples of these initiatives included offering a variety of meal plans, including an option that provides ten or fewer meals weekly to avoid interfering with SNAP eligibility, creating or implementing meal-sharing programs, educating student leaders on campus to develop student-centered programs, or facilitating innovative community partnerships.
RACC will use the funding to support two campus initiatives. Approximately $15,000 will be allocated to providing hot meals to eligible students in the campus cafeteria. The remaining funds will support The Raven Food Pantry. The pantry is regularly stocked with a variety of non-perishable foods and products, including canned fruits and vegetables, peanut butter, jelly, snack bars, crackers, rice, sauce and pastas. Personal care and clothing items are also available.
The grants are awarded with the purpose of addressing food insecurity on campus, including expanding access to food options, creating awareness initiatives, and upgrading facilities. Awardees will be able to utilize the grant funds until December 31, 2023.
To learn more, contact RACC Director of Grants, Rhonda Hudak at 610.372.4721 x5016.
January 9. 2023 — Reading Area Community College (RACC) and Villanova University, College of Professional Studies (CPS) entered into a Guaranteed Admission and Transfer Agreement on Friday, January 6 in a signing ceremony in the Miller Center for the Arts on the RACC campus.
The agreement will facilitate the transfer of RACC students to all majors offered through CPS exclusively under the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies.
"We are proudly celebrating this new agreement with Villanova University, which will open many new doors of opportunity for our graduates," says Dr. Susan Looney, RACC president. “This pathway is the result of great cooperation and collaboration between faculty and deans of our respective institutions and will serve well both the needs of our institutions and, more importantly, those of our students."
"This new transfer agreement between Reading Area Community College and Villanova University College of Professional Studies is an exciting step forward,” says Christine Kelleher Palus, dean of the College of Professional Studies. “Every day in CPS we strive to allow greater access to a rigorous Villanova education, and we are thrilled to welcome RACC graduates to our community of learners. To our future students, with a solid educational foundation at RACC and a bachelor’s degree from Villanova, where you’ve been is just the beginning.”
Eligible students with an overall grade point average of 3.0 to 3.49 will receive a 20% tuition reduction, and those with a 3.5 to 4.0 will receive a 25% tuition reduction for each course taken at CPS.
"The new admissions agreement between Reading Area Community College and Villanova will expand access to our college's transformative education for our students. This partnership will provide a direct pathway to a Villanova degree for the talented graduates of RACC programs," says Kristen Marcinko, RACC director of academic partnerships.
In addition to tuition reduction, CPS may also offer Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) scholarships for qualified graduates admitted to CPS.
To learn more about the RACC and CPS and other transfer opportunities, visit the Transfer Services page.
READING, PA – On Thursday, November 10, the Berks Regional Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professio
READING, PA – On Thursday, November 10, the Berks Regional Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professions (AFP) honored The Foundation for Reading Area Community College (RACC) as its Outstanding Foundation at the annual AFP Berks Regional Chapter Awards Breakfast held at the DoubleTree Hotel in Reading.
Gary Moyer, Chair of the Board of Directors for the Foundation for RACC says, “We are honored to be recognized for our dedication to RACC students. The year 2021 marked the 50th anniversary of the college and the foundation celebrated the historic significance of this milestone with an incredible year of philanthropic success for the benefit of the students of the college.”
Key Foundation initiatives included a comprehensive partnership with Helping Harvest, which led to the establishment of the Ravens’ Food Pantry on campus for students experiencing food insecurity. Another initiative is the Student Emergency Assistance Fund, which helps students pay for rent, electric bills, transportation, phone bills and other emergent needs; to allow the student to remain in college and complete their education. The Foundation for RACC also secured a grant from Truist to sponsor an event at Boscov’s Department Store, which provided professional clothing for graduating students.
“RACC has 8500 students. Last year we distributed over a million dollars through over 700 scholarships to students. Scholarships are the essence of what we are about as a foundation. Despite our successes, the best is still ahead for us,” says Tony DeMarco, RACC VP for college advancement & executive director of the Foundation for RACC.
DeMarco and the Foundation also managed and organized the sold out RACC 50th Anniversary Gala with over 800 attendees that raised $1.3 million dollars and featured the co-founder of Apple Computer, Steve Wozniak. RACC’s 50th is widely regarded as one of the finest non-profit events in Berks County history.
The Foundation manages over 120 scholarship opportunities, many of which are for first generation or lower-income students, high school students who matriculate to RACC from a Berks County high school, or students in the college’s workforce training programs. In 2021, the Foundation distributed over $1M in scholarship support to RACC students.
To learn more about the Foundation for RACC, call 610.607.6239.
READING, PA – On Friday, October 21, the Miller Center for the Arts on the Reading Area Community College (RAC
READING, PA – On Friday, October 21, the Miller Center for the Arts on the Reading Area Community College (RACC) campus celebrated its 15-year anniversary with a performance by world-renowned contemporary dance sensation, Parsons Dance Company. A pre-show reception at the Schmidt Training and Technology Center on the RACC campus hosted a large crowd of supporters, followed by the capacity performance in the Miller Center venue.
“Thank you, Marlin and Ginger Miller, for the beautiful theater that bears your name. Your generosity has provided our RACC students, staff, and community members with one of the finest performance venues in Pennsylvania. We thank you for 15 years of spectacular concerts and dance presentations, 15 years of comedy and music and 15 years of performance excellence,” says RACC President Dr. Susan Looney.
The Miller Center for the Arts emerged from the vision and philanthropy of Mr. Marlin Miller. Working closely with the President Emeritus, Gust Zogas as well as with the architects, construction crews and various visual artists, the Miller Center for the Arts emerged to bring some of the finest singers, musicians and dancers in the world to the campus of RACC.
“After 15 years, we are so very proud to hold true to Marlin and Ginger Miller’s vision of an exquisite theater that brings some of the finest performance artists in the world to Berks County and our surrounding region. We are blessed through the endowment commitments of Dr. Frank Franco, Renee and Bruce Dietrich, Gust and Doris Zogas and, of course, Marlin and Ginger Miller, to bring a varied array of musical, comedic and dramatic genres to the Miller Center,” says RACC Vice President of College Advancement and the Executive Director of the Foundation for Reading Area Community College, Tony DeMarco.
The Miller Center for the Arts has become an anchor in the City of Reading’s cultural landscape. The 500 seat theatre offers quality programming for all ages and interests. Whether it is modern dance, improv comedy or a children’s show, the Miller Center has something for everyone.
Some of the more prominent acts that have appeared at the Miller Center include David Sedaris, Judy Collins, Three Dog Night, The Machine, Tom Papa, and Josh Ritter.
Along with performances, the Miller Center also hosts community events and is available for rental. For more information on how we can accommodate your event, please contact Megan Schappell at 610.607.6205.
Photo Caption: From Left to Right:
Dr. Susan Looney, Marlin Miller, Ginger Miller, Tony DeMarco
Reading Area Community College will receive $5 million toward the Weitz Healthcare Pavilion
Reading Area Community College will receive $5 million toward the Weitz Healthcare Pavilion
Reading - October 26, 2022 - This evening Sen. Judy Schwank (D-Berks) announced $20.5 million in Redevelopment Assistance Capitol Program grant funding for seven 11th Senatorial District projects.
Reading Area Community College received $5 million in funding for the Weitz Health Pavilion. With funding, Weitz Hall will undergo a series of physical improvements to increase learning space for health care students and workers. The project would allow all health care programming to be housed in one building.
“I’m very pleased to see Gov. Wolf continue to support Berks County’s thriving network of higher education,” Schwank said. “We now have three institutions of higher education operating in Reading that are able to move forward with big projects that will provide students with world-class educational opportunities and help the commonwealth meet its long-term workforce needs.”
Alvernia University was awarded $7.5 million in funding for the development of the vacant sixth floor of the Reading CollegeTowne building, which will allow the university to expand program offerings and student housing.
Albright College was granted $3 million in funding for renovations to the Leo Camp Building. The building will become the home of the Science Research Institute.