UTICA — Excellus BlueCross BlueShield recently awarded On Point for College Utica a $4,000 Community Health Award in support of their Excellus Scholars Emergency Support Services. This program provides entry and success services to help students enroll, persevere, and graduate.
On Point helps students overcome barriers to higher education and gain careers as nurses, physicians, CNAs, therapists, medical interpreters, and other healthcare professionals.
“We help the first generation of low-income students believe that college is possible,” explains Kevin Marken, director of On Point for College Utica. “With this funding, we will be able to provide 20 On Point students, who are currently studying at university and pursuing a degree in health care, the services they need to persevere and graduate.
These new healthcare professionals will have the potential to improve the health and well-being of the people in our community.”
The mission of On Point for College is to break down barriers that prevent young, disadvantaged individuals from achieving education and career success. On Point for College strives to transform communities by making college, education and career success a reality for those facing major obstacles.
With offices in Syracuse and Utica, the organization serves youth in Onondaga, Cayuga, Oswego, Cortland, Madison, Oneida, and Herkimer counties.
Through a competitive application process, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield’s Community Health Awards provide funding to launch, expand and support programs and services that promote health.
These investments promote health equity by extending the reach of preventive health services or health promotion programs to vulnerable populations.
The health plan corporate endowment follows all applicable laws and regulations and does not support funding organizations that conflict with the company’s mission, goals, policies or products.
“The company’s Community Health Awards demonstrate the company’s commitment to supporting local organizations that share our mission as a nonprofit health plan,” said Eve Van de Wal, Utica regional president of Excellus BlueCross BlueShield.
The region of Utica includes Clinton, Delaware, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Madison, Montgomery, Oneida, Otsego, and St. Lawrence counties. Van de Wal said they recognize that addressing social determinants of health, such as education, are vital to the health and well-being of communities in the region.
“We are excited to support On Point for College Utica with this vital funding to help break down barriers to education for those in our community and create opportunities for students to enter healthcare,” she said.