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Essex County College was front and center during the March 10 New Jersey State Senate Budget Committee hearing, as President Dr. Anthony E. Munroe delivered the 2020-2021 budget presentation and issues on behalf of all 18 state community colleges. The hearing was held at neighboring NJIT.
Dr. Munroe was accompanied by ECC students Ronnie Bermeo and Madeline Mendez. Ronnie, a Newark Supply Chain Management major also addressed the Senate panel on the importance of continuing the state’s Community College Opportunity Grant (CCOG) program, which covers tuition costs for qualified students.
Dr. Munroe remarked that more than 7,000 students state-wide have taken advantage of the CCOG program, which is the “last resort” following the exhaustion of other aid and grants. He urged the program be made permanent. At ECC since the Fall of 2019, 631 students have received CCOG aid, totaling $713,357.
Dr. Aaron Fitchner, President of the New Jersey Council of Community Colleges, joined Dr. Munroe at the hearing.