ISACA GWDC and NOVA have a strong relationship. NOVA has a formal ISACA student interest group and active collaboration between the chapter and NOVA professors, faculty, and students takes place on a regular basis. With the onset of COVID-19 and the devastation it caused on the economy, NOVA students were impacted by the cascading effect of businesses closing or internship opportunities being deferred. GWDC is working with NOVA to support students in need during this time. If you are interested in ways to give back to the community and contribute to an organization that actively collaborates with GWDC, please review the information below on the impact COVID-19 has had on NOVA students and how to donate any amount of money.
COVID-19 Impacts on NOVA Students:
As of March 30 based on 2,000 Emergency Grant applications received in only a 94-hour timespan:
- 739 Students requested help to secure food/groceries
- 1,518 Students reported challenges with work/job
- 298 mentioned “cut hours”
- 187 cited being laid off
- 95 Students sought help with health-related expenses
- 994 Students need help to cover rent/mortgage
With an enrollment of more than 85,000 students, NOVA is the 14th largest institution of higher learning in the U.S. It offers 73 associate degree programs that lead to employment or university transfer and 61 certificate programs that teach specific skill sets such as healthcare and IT that are in demand across our region. NOVA graduates more than 6,000 students yearly, making the College a leading source of talented hires for the region.
However, statistics only tell part of the story. NOVA students attend classes and succeed often against great odds. More than 20% of NOVA students are the first in their families to attend college, and 76% of first generation students belong to a racial or ethnic minority. NOVA students hail from more than 160 countries and speak nearly 120 different languages.
In January 2020, The Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice at Temple University (Philadelphia, PA) conducted a survey for Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) to gather a current assessment of basic needs (defined as food or housing insecurity and homelessness) of NOVA students. More than 1,400 students participated. The survey results confirmed what many faculty and staff have known about our student body – basic needs insecurity is a condition challenging our students. The survey revealed:
- 32% of respondents experienced food insecurity in the prior 30 days
- 39% of respondents experienced housing insecurity in the previous year
- 15% of respondents experienced homelessness in the previous year
49% of students at Northern Virginia Community College experienced at least one of these forms of basic needs insecurity in the past year
Based on The Hope Center’s survey, we know that 49% of NOVA students experienced at least one form of basic needs insecurity just last year. This information causes us great concern given the ever-changing public health crisis caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. The good news is that NOVA remains open to serve our students through remote instructional and service delivery. The College is dedicated to doing everything in its power to keep students in school to complete the current semester and continue progress toward their degrees.
Call to Action
College leadership and key staff are meeting daily to assess needs, implement creative solutions to meet basic needs and quickly deliver emergency aid to the students who need it most. Many of our students are already financially vulnerable. They work one or more part-time jobs in the service industry to pay their bills. With furloughs and layoffs happening every day, what income they have is diminishing rapidly. Food insecurity for students and their families is one of our top concerns. In addition, as NOVA has moved to remote instructional delivery and with K12 schools closed, many students are trying to make this work with a child at home.
As a result, we are launching the NOVA COVID-19 Emergency Student Aid Fund to facilitate the rapid delivery of emergency aid funding to our students who need it most. Our aim is to meet students’ basic needs to help them stay in school to complete the semester and continue progress toward their degrees. Our goal is to raise $750,000 to provide at least 1,500 grants at $500 each. The NOVA Educational Foundation will match up to $250,000. Ensuring every student succeeds is our highest priority. As our students face unprecedented challenges, we must do all we can to support them. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to assist NOVA students during this challenging time. To contribute:
Text: Simply text “nova” to phone number 56651. Follow the prompts to make and pay for your donation.
By email: firstname.lastname@example.org
By phone: 703-323-3023
Jason joined ISACA in 2006 and presently serves as GWDC President. He’s served on the Chapter Board of Directors since 2014. Jason is very involved with ISACA International and some of his volunteering consists of serving on the Chapter Services Working Group, Leadership Development Advisory Council, and contributing significantly to CISA and CISM exam preparation content. Jason is an Associate Partner within IBM’s Cybersecurity and Biometrics Practice. He holds the CISSP-ISSAP, CISA, CISM, and PMP.