Villa Maria College is welcoming back students by hosting a free textbook and supplies distribution event to kick off the Spring Semester with well-known Buffalonians Russell Salvatore, Dave Greber, Senator Kenney’s Office, Say Yes Buffalo, and Hyatt’s, along with other friends of the College. The event takes place on Wednesday, January 18, beginning at 11:00 AM and running through 12:00 PM. During this time, students are invited to pick up their books and supplies in the book distribution center, which is in the College’s dining hall in the Main Building, located at 240 Pine Ridge Rd, Buffalo, NY 14225.
Villa Maria launched its Free Books Program – the first and only of its kind in Western New York – in August 2021. The program was developed as part of the College’s ongoing effort to prioritize student success and to make higher education accessible and equitable for all.
“Through this initiative, Villa Maria is breaking down barriers and creating an inclusive environment for students to truly pursue academics,” said Senator Tim Kennedy. “I commend the College for taking this proactive approach, and wholeheartedly believe it will increase access to the quality education that Villa Maria delivers every day.”
In addition to these guest appearances, students can look forward to activities, refreshments, and more. The College will strictly adhere to all of Erie County’s COVID-19 policies, including the requirement of facial coverings.
At Villa Maria College, the textbooks and supplies needed for academic success will be distributed to all students for free for the second consecutive semester. “Villa Maria College is really ahead of the game when it comes to student success,” said JaVonntae Hill, a second-year student dual majoring in Game Design and Animation. “This isn’t my first college experience and, compared to other colleges, Villa Maria really goes above and beyond to ensure their students’ success. Eliminating the cost of textbooks and supplies is just another testament to Villa putting education and success first. You truly can depend on everyone at Villa to put your education first.”
The College’s newest student success and equality initiative made an immediate impact on Villa Maria’s students. “Textbooks and art supplies are notoriously expensive,” said Dr. Matthew Giordano, Villa Maria’s president. “By absorbing that cost, Villa Maria College is alleviating a significant financial burden from students and their families. Students come here determined to meet the academic and personal goals they’ve set for themselves. Our mission is to help them succeed by breaking down the barriers that may stand in their way. In this case, it was the heavy cost of the items needed for success in the classroom that needed to be addressed.”
As the most diverse private college in Western New York, Villa Maria has a long history of prioritizing equality among students and promoting student success. Another new initiative is the College’s Debt Relief Program. The program, also unique to Villa Maria, offers grants that alleviate the financial burden of students who are determined to return to the College and complete their education.
Other equity initiatives developed and implemented at Villa Maria College include:
- The Achieve Program for Students with Learning Differences
- The Care Center, which promotes the emotional well-being of all students
- The Sister Mary Josette Food Pantry, an on-campus establishment that serves over 1,000 individuals in the local community each month
- The Student Emergency Fund, which was created to aid students experiencing unexpected financial hardships.
- The College’s partnership with Say Yes Buffalo, an organization that makes higher education more attainable to graduates of City of Buffalo high schools
- 99% of students receive financial aid, and 85% receive Villa-funded grants and scholarships
To learn more about Villa Maria’s Free Books program, visit https://www.villa.edu/villa-maria-college-launches-free-books-and-supplies-initiative-with-the-help-of-hyatts.