WSAS Student Services Grants

WSAS Student Services Grants

The Wellesley Students' Aid Society (WSAS) is pleased to announce the continuation of WSAS Student Services Grants.  WSAS recognizes that many other departments and offices throughout Wellesley College offer support to students, and through this program, we continue to collaborate with colleagues both to identify students’ needs and to help address them.

As in our previous Grants Award year, WSAS sent Requests for Proposals to student service offices at the College inviting them to apply to WSAS for grants to develop and sustain programs to support the students with whom they work.  As of Spring 2021, WSAS has awarded 29 grants totaling $123,400.

Wellesley College students interested in the grant opportunities listed should contact the department/office administering the grant program directly. General questions about WSAS’ Student Services Grants program should be directed to Catherine Kefalas.

GRANTS AWARDED Academic Year 2020-2021:

Class Deans’ Office
Emergency Leave of Absence Support Spring 2021 - $5,000

Office of Intercultural Education
Virtual Self-Care Event Spring 2021 - $1,000
LatinXpo to be presented Fall 2021 - $1,600
Asian American First Year Fellowship - $2,500

Office of International Study
Study Abroad Support for Students with Financial Need Spring 2021 - $10,000

Office of Residential Life
Winter Clothing Grant Fall 2020 - $5,000
Holiday 2020 and Winter Break 2021 Food Grant Winter 2020/2021 - $2,000
Residential Resource Closets Spring 2021 - $5,000

Slater International Center
US Work Authorization Application Fee Support for Senior International Students Spring 2021 - $5,000

Stone Center Counseling Services
CARE NOW Grant - $10,000
Transportation Grant For Mental Health Provider Visits - $10,000

Wellesley Career Education
Wellesley College Hive Internship Support for International Students and Students with Financial Need Spring 2021 - $9,000
Graduate School Preparation Support for Students with Financial Need Spring 2021 - $5,000

Class Deans’ Office
Emergency Leave of Absence Support Spring 2021 - $5,000
Funds from this grant will be made available for students who need to go on leave during the academic year because of a medical, mental health or personal emergency.  These funds will be used to assist with expenses related to packing, shipping, and storing personal items, and for the student’s transportation so that financial concerns do not interfere with the students’ decision-making process.
Contact: Susan Cohen, Dean of the Class of 2022 & Davis Scholars

Office of Intercultural Education
Virtual Self-Care Event Spring 2021 - $1,000
Funds from this grant will support a virtual self-care evening of DIY cookie decorating, mindfulness and reflection in an effort to help our students currently attending Wellesley from their homes to feel seen, known, and loved in the student community.
Contact: Mared Alicea-Westort, Assistant Dean of Intercultural Education & Advisor to Latinx Students

LatinXpo to be presented Fall 2021 - $1,600
Funds from this grant will support the LatinXpo event to be held during Hispanic Heritage month.  LatinXpo will be a space for building community and rapport among Wellesley students, faculty and staff, and will offer this year’s First Year students (who will be sophomores in the Fall) a special opportunity to continue finding their place at Wellesley. This experience will also offer a taste of the vibrant cuisines from areas of Latin America.
Contact: Mared Alicea-Westort, Assistant Dean of Intercultural Education & Advisor to Latinx Students

Asian American First Year Fellowship Fall 2021 - $2,500
Funds from this grant will support an 8-week long fellowship that will consist of weekly workshops for Asian American students to explore their racial identity, the intersectionality of their racial identity, and how to practice inter-racial solidarity and allyship as they navigate their first year at Wellesley. The goal of the project is to provide Asian American students a space to unpack their racial identity in relation to other identities (e.g. gender/sexual orientation and class status); connect Asian American students with Wellesley professors who teach Asian American Studies/related topics or are allies to the Asian American community; and foster meaningful relationships between participants that will last throughout their four years at Wellesley. Each week’s 2-hour-long workshop will center on a specific identity/topic. In the program design, Wellesley professors from a diverse range of disciplines will play an integral role in both deepening participants’ understanding of their racial identities at Wellesley and exposing first year students to the inclusive curricula Wellesley departments have to offer. We believe that providing first years exposure to Asian American professors and academic allies to the Asian American community will have implications for Asian American students’ academic trajectories, personal development, and mental health and wellbeing during their four years Wellesley and beyond.
Contact: Karen Shih, Assistant Dean of Intercultural Education and Advisor to Students of Asian Descent

Office of International Study
Study Abroad Support for Students with Financial Need Spring 2021 - $10,000
Funds from this grant will support students with high financial need who are planning to study abroad in Fall 2021. Participating students have significant expenses for study abroad program that they will need to pay in advance of receiving their financial aid. For some students, these expenses are a concern as they begin their preparations for study abroad.
Contact: Kristiana Graves Floss, Assistant Director of International Study

Office of Residential Life

Winter Clothing Grant Fall 2020 - $5,000
With the WSAS Clothes Closet closed for AY20/21 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students coming to campus from warm climates do not have an on-campus resource for obtaining cold weather clothing. These funds will be used to provide grants of $100 to approximately 50 students who are in need of winter clothing.  
Contact: Kristen Jiin Park, Community Director (Severance and Claflin) and First Generation Network Coordinator

Holiday 2020/Winter Break 2021 Food Grant - $2,000
Funds from this grant purchased a holiday meal and other food for a small population of students who could not return home and remained on campus this holiday season and winter break.
Contact: Kristen Jiin Park, Community Director (Severance and Claflin) and First Generation Network Coordinator
Students enjoy a holiday meal on campus
Residential Resource Closets Spring 2021 - $5,000
The joint initiative between Wellesley Students’ Aid Society and Wellesley ResLife and Housing will make available a place where students may access living necessities (toiletries, hygiene products, laundry, etc.) for free. In addition, students may replenish the Resource Closet as their situation permits.  There are two Resource Closets on campus: (1) Stone Davis - 1st Floor, Outside the WSAS Clothes Closet; and (2) Severance - 1st Floor Living Room.
Contact: Kristen Jiin Park, Community Director (Severance and Claflin) and First Generation Network Coordinator
WSAS Resource Closet Spring 2021

WSAS Resource Closet Additional Picture

Slater International Center
US Work Authorization Application Fee Support for Senior International Students Spring 2021 - $5,000
Funds from this grant will support senior international students with financial need with the cost of applying to the US government for the opportunity to work post-graduation.  The application fee for this post-graduation work opportunity is a heavy burden for many international students.  If approved, these students will receive a work authorization card to work in the US legally for 12 months.  Many students and their families have been negatively affected by the pandemic.  This, coupled with the devaluation of currency around the world, increases the need of these students even more than usual.
Contact: Tana Ruegamer, Director, Slater International Center

Stone Center Counseling Services
CARE NOW Grant - $10,000

Funds from the CARE NOW grant aims to assist high risk students in need of higher level of mental health care treatment, and encountering financial barriers to access this life saving treatment. This grant will provide funds to eliminate or mitigate financial barriers when a student is in need of Partial hospitalization Program, Inpatient hospitalization or specialized out of network needs. The grant allows for flexibility in exploring treatment options and how to eliminate or mitigate the financial barrier by covering a deductible, coinsurance, or when most cost effective will subsidize the purchase of the college insurance. The CARE NOW grant hopes that no student has to make a choice between getting care and financial setback. Students are expected to contribute personal/family resources towards their treatment if available and able as we hope to help as many students as possible in a fair and equitable manner.
Contact: Sandra Acevedo, LICSW, Student Care Coordinator

Transportation Grant For Mental Health Provider Visits - $10,000
The Stone Center Counseling Services provides therapy services to about 35% of the students on campus. Our model is designed for short term support as we do not have the staffing capacity to see every student that needs support once a week. A clinician position was created to assist students in connecting with providers in the community when the needs of our students exceed the SCCS capacity.  It is in the referral process that many students raised concerns about their ability to pay for co-pays and transportation cost to and from the office of the community provider. These concerns are consistent with 60% of our students receiving financial aid. Funds from this grant will provide mini grants to help students subsidize the cost of transportation to get to a provider’s office. We expect students to use their resources as this support is intended as a subsidy only to this cost.
Contact: Sandra Acevedo, LICSW, Student Care Coordinator
 

Wellesley Career Education
Wellesley College Hive Internship Support for International Students and Students with Financial Need Spring 2021 - $9,000
Funds from this grant will support students participating in Wellesley College Hive Internship Projects that are otherwise unpaid. Applications for funds will be available to both international students and students demonstrating high financial need. This amount will allow us to distribute grants to offset financial and international student legal hurdles that would otherwise inhibit participation in these summer experiential learning projects.
Contact: Tess Mattern, Associate Director of Operations & Marketing, Wellesley Career Education

Graduate School Preparation Support for Students with Financial Need Spring 2021 - $5,000
Funds from this grant will help students cover costs associated with the graduate school application process. These grants would be available to juniors and seniors who are in the process of applying to graduate school. Typical costs associated with the graduate school application process include Application Fees, Standardized Tests, Test Prep and Program Visits and Interviews. Considering that almost 60% of Wellesley students receive financial aid, these are the types of expenses many of our students cannot afford.
Contact: Jen Pollard, Executive Director & Associate Provost

GRANTS AWARDED Academic Year 2019-2020 (Temporarily suspended in Spring 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic and evacuation of campus.):

Class Deans’ Office
Emergency Leave of Absence Support Spring 2019 - $5,000

First Generation Network/Class Deans’ Office
Wellesley First Graduate School Bootcamp Prep Program Spring 2019 - $5,000

Health Services and the Stone Center Counseling Service
Transportation Pilot Program for Medical Visits Spring 2019 - $6,500

Office of Accessibility and Disability Resources
Student Disability Testing for Low Income Students Spring 2019 - $5,000

Office of Intercultural Education
Latinx Study Break Spring 2019 - $1,000
Traditional Holistic Health and Wellness Workshop Spring 2019 - $1,000

Office of Religious and Spiritual Life
Ramadan Community Iftar Dinner Spring 2019 - $1,500

Office of Residential Life
Laundry Support Fall 2019/Spring 2020 - $1,800
Wintersession Food Grant Winter 2020 - $500
COVID Student Support Grant Spring 2020 - $1,000
COVID Food Pantry Grant Summer 2020 - $1,000

Physical Education, Recreation and Athletics
PERA Physical Education Gear Program Pilot Spring 2019 - $10,000

Slater International Center
Increased Awareness and Support for Nutritional Food Access and Food Insecurity Spring 2019 - $2,000
Non-Resident Tax Advising and Preparation Support for International Students and Scholars Spring 2019 - $5,000

Wellesley Career Education
Graduate School Preparation for Students of Need Spring 2019 - $5,000
Wellesley Career Education Suit Program Spring 2019 - $1,000

Class Deans’ Office
Emergency Leave of Absence Support - $5,000
Funds from this grant will be made available for students who need to go on leave during the academic year because of a medical, mental health or personal emergency.  These funds will be used to assist with expenses related to packing, shipping, and storing personal items, and for the student’s transportation so that financial concerns do not interfere with the students’ decision-making process.
Contact: Lori I. Tenser, Associate Dean of Students of Academic Integration and Advising

First Generation Network/Class Deans’ Office
Wellesley First Graduate School Bootcamp Prep Program - $5,000
This 5-day program is designed to acquaint first generation students – the first in their family to pursue a four-year college degree – with the knowledge needed to successfully apply to graduate school.  The program includes a variety of workshops, events, and networking that help demystify the graduate application process.  The program is open to any Junior of Senior first generation or underrepresented student.
Contact: Rebecca Garcia, Dean of the Class of 2020 (M-Z) and Director of Wellesley First

Health Services and the Stone Center Counseling Service
Transportation Pilot Program for Medical Visits - $6,500
Off-campus transportation for routine and urgent care visits to outside medical offices and referrals to community specialists are an issue for students with limited funds and with no access to personal transportation.  The funds from this grant will pilot a robust program by tracking and monitoring off-campus transportation for routine and urgent medical visits during and after business hours including weekends.
Contacts: Robin Cook-Nobles, the Stone Center Counseling Service, and Ilene Goldberg, Health Services

Office of Accessibility and Disability Resources
Student Disability Testing for Low Income Students - $5,000
Neuropsychological testing determines whether a learning disability, ADHD, or a mental health disorder exists.  The results of such testing provide documentation for academic accommodations that support student learning.  Low income students may not have the resources to pay for testing and therefore are not given equal access to academic accommodations.  The funds from this grant will be used to develop a pilot program that would assist staff with implementing a process to help students obtain testing regardless of their ability to pay.
Contacts: Jim Wice, Director

Office of Intercultural Education
Latinx Study Break - $1,000
The funds from this grant will support a study break for students during reading period week.  This much needed break will consist of arts and crafts activities, board games, 15-minute chair massages, and food offerings.  This will provide students an opportunity for an incredible therapeutic and relaxing experience during a particularly stressful time in the semester.
Contact: Mared Alicea-Westort, Assistant Dean of Intercultural Education and Advisor to Latinx Students

Traditional Holistic Health and Wellness Workshop - $1,000
Funds from this grant will be used to support a workshop which centers on culturally appropriate wellness techniques and practices.  This workshop would resonate with Latinx students’ background and traditions, with a focus on holistic wellness.  According to The Stone Center Counseling Service, Latinx students at Wellesley are the demographic using counseling services the least.  This workshop will expand upon the health and wellness services available at Wellesley, and hopefully will increase dialogue about, and an interest in, learning more about on-campus health and wellness resources for Latinx students.
Contact: Mared Alicea-Westort, Assistant Dean of Intercultural Education and Advisor to Latinx Students

Office of Religious and Spiritual Life
Ramadan Community Iftar Dinner - $1,500
The Wellesley College 2019 Commencement coincided with the month of Ramadan, a special time for Muslims commemorating the revelation of the Quran. The month occurred this year between May 5 - June 4, 2019, and many Muslims were observing the traditional fasts from dawn to sunset. The Office of Religious and Spiritual Life hosted a Commencement Iftar Dinner on May 30, 2019 for seniors, their families, and friends. Funds from this grant provided dinner for approximately 58 people.
Contact: Amira Quraishi, Interim Dean of the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life

 
 

Office of Residential Life
Laundry Support - $1,800

Funds from this grant will help students access laundry services by providing them with detergent pods and dryer sheets.  These items are available by making a request to a Community Director on an as needed basis.
Contact: Kristen Jiin Park, Community Director (Severance and Claflin) and First Generation Network Coordinator
Laundry baskets with soap and dryer sheets

Wintersession Food Grant - $500
Funds from this grant helped stock the kitchens with food for students who were staying on campus for wintersession.
Contact: Martha Zamora, Community Director

COVID Spring 2020 Student Support Grant - $1,000
Funds from this grant helped support students who could not return home and remained on campus this spring during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Contact: Kristen Jiin Park, Community Director (Severance and Claflin) and First Generation Network Coordinator
Res Life Programs Announcement Spring 2020
Res Life flyer announcing exam treats 2020


COVID Summer 2020 Food Pantry Grant - $1,000
Funds from this grant purchased food for a small population of students who could not return home and remained on campus this summer for an extended period of time due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Contact: Kristen Jiin Park, Community Director (Severance and Claflin) and First Generation Network Coordinator
Grocery bags full of food for Food Pantry Grant
 

Physical Education, Recreation and Athletics
PERA Physical Education Gear Program Pilot - $10,000
Funds from this grant will help high need Wellesley College students purchase the athletic gear needed for physical education classes.  Wellesley College’s physical education graduation requirement brings every Wellesley student through PERA’s doors.  However, many students, especially those identified as high need, cannot afford the cost of basic fitness gear like proper running shoes or a sports bra.  Based on 2017-18 academic year statistics, this program would impact nearly one quarter of the student population.  With this program students would be able to acquire the gear they need to safely complete their requirement.
Contact: Elaine Harvey, PERA Assistant Director

Slater International Center
Increased Awareness and Support for Nutritional Food Access and Food Insecurity - $2,000
Funds from this grant will assist Slater Center in creating a safe and accessible space for their student and scholar community during Wellesley College break periods.  This space will provide students with not only food security, but also nutritious cultural ingredients that tend to be more difficult to obtain.  This population is susceptible to experiencing strong feelings of isolation, homesickness, and culture shock during these breaks. Food can be emotional for these individuals living abroad, and home cooking can give them some socio-emotional support. This proposal will assist Slater in purchasing healthier food options for students who cannot afford to travel or meal swipe into on-campus dining facilities during the academic breaks.
Contact: Leanne Dolat, Program Coordinator

Non-Resident Tax Advising and Preparation Support for International Students and Scholars - $5,000
Funds from this grant will assist Slater Center to better support all international students and scholars with access to specialists and an upgraded tax program so that they can maintain accurate tax records. Students and scholars may find adjusting to permanent residence status and other immigration statuses in the future difficult if accurate tax records are not filed and maintained.  Since the Slater Center Team is not legally allowed to advise on taxes, this leaves our students without the advice necessary to properly file taxes. Grant funds will allow the upgrade to a new tax program, tax workshops to learn how to use the new tax program presented by the tax company providing the software, 24-hour technical support, and two tax workshops by a CPA/tax specialist to support our tax advising.
Contact: Tana Ruegamer, Director of Slater International Center/ International Student and Scholar Advisor

Wellesley Career Education
Graduate School Preparation for Students of Need - $5,000
Students of need can apply for funding from this grant for graduate processes including test preparation books and sample tests for students to access (MCAT, LSAT, GRE, DAT, GMAT, etc), as well as application fees for graduate programs. There will be an application process for students to be eligible for this funding, and the maximum amount of funding will be $250 per student
Contact: Katy Ryan, Career Community Advisor

Wellesley Career Education Suit Program - $1,000
Funds from this grant will be used to support students in need by covering the $25 cost of dry cleaning when they borrow a suit. For many students, even the $25 cost can prohibit them from borrowing one of our free suits to use for an internship – on or off campus.  Any unused funds that remain at the end of the academic year will be used to purchase new suits to supplement what is currently available.
Contact: Jennifer Pollard, Director of Operations, and Shelley Stokes, Career Education Coordinator