Supporting students through room and board
“A large percentage of Cristo Rey students are the first in their families to go to high school and almost always the first to go to college. When you give these students a real chance to go to the college or university of their dreams, you change their lives and the lives of their families for the better.”
— Ann Kenny Carr
Ann Kenny Carr, Arts ’64, and her husband, Rich, recently decided to give Cristo Rey students that chance by re-designating their existing endowed full-tuition scholarship at Marquette to benefit incoming students from Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Chicago. Founded in 1996, Cristo Rey Chicago was the model that inspired today’s national network of 38 Cristo Rey schools, providing a Catholic, college preparatory education and professional work experience to students from Spanish-speaking families with limited financial means.
Significantly, Ann and Rich bolstered their endowed fund with an additional gift so that their scholarship also covers room and board for recipients in perpetuity.
“For this population of students, a tuition-only scholarship award to a college or university can be heartbreaking because of the difficulties financing room and board,” says Ann. “We wanted to help overcome that.”
Loyalty to her alma mater was another motivator. Larger universities with massive endowments are often able to offer more generous scholarship packages, luring promising potential students with financial need away from Marquette. “Full-ride” scholarships like Ann and Rich’s that cover both full-tuition and room and board help to change the equation.
The benefits of living on campus cannot be overstated. Retention and graduation rates are consistently higher among students who live on campus compared to those who commute.
Campus residency also makes for a better overall student experience which can enhance academic performance. A recent multi-institutional study published in the Journal of First-generation Student Success found that first-year, first-generation students from low-income backgrounds who lived on campus had a significantly higher sense of belonging, a more welcoming perception of campus climate, and higher resilience compared to matched peers who did not live on campus.
“I received scholarship aid in college and in graduate school, in both cases for tuition and room and board. As a result, I feel more loyalty to my schools and was able to give back in the form of money and time.” — Rich Carr
Ann and Rich encourage other Marquette donors to consider revising existing scholarships like they did or starting new ones that cover both tuition and room and board. “We’ve been blessed,” says Ann. “We are happy to do this.”
Providing real access to the full Marquette Experience through full-ride scholarships, what a powerful way to Be the Difference in the lives of deserving students and their families.
Learn more about Marquette’s Encuentros Mentor Program for Cristo Rey Students. https://www.marquette.edu/diversity/encuentros-mentor-program.php