22 May Grants in Action – Huntington County Community Learning Center
A shining example of community collaboration, the Huntington County Community Learning Center (LC) was officially dedicated last September after years of planning and fundraising. With support from local governments, businesses, individuals, and nonprofit organizations like the Foundation, the LC is now a one-stop shop for citizens wanting to assess their current skills, acquire new skills, and find employment resources.
The Foundation began its relationship with the LC in the fall of 2013 through a $65,000 Make a Difference grant made possible by the Foundation’s collection of Community Impact Funds. The grant provided the LC with nearly all of the necessary furnishings and equipment including desks, chairs, computers, and monitors. One year later, the Foundation had the unique opportunity to double-down on its support by endorsing the LC as one of the Foundation’s top community projects during the Lilly Endowment GIFT VI Initiative. By raising an additional $100,000 through the Foundation, the LC received a $50,000 grant from the Lilly Endowment to help complete the 7,500 square foot expansion of the former Huntington County Community Schools Corporation Vocational Center.
Since opening the LC, high school student enrollment in career and technical education courses has increased 30%. In addition, Ivy Tech started offering adult academic courses and WorkOne is onsite to help with job placements and workshops.
For LC Director Tiffanney Drummond the message is simple: “Regardless as to where you are in life, the LC wants to support you in your educational pursuits. From a high school equivalency diploma, to college academic courses and from high school dual credit industry certification courses, to short term certification training for adults, the LC is here to serve you and the community.”