Harrisburg, June 5, 2019 – State Senator John Yudichak (D – Luzerne/Carbon) announced today that the Carbon/Schuylkill SHINE after-school program and the Luzerne County SHINE after-school program have received 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) grant funding for 2019-2024. The federal funding is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) via the 21st CCLC program.

“The 21st Century Community Learning Centers program is an essential element of the successful academic outcomes for students in the Carbon/Schuylkill and Luzerne County SHINE programs,” said State Senator John Yudichak. “Quality, STEM-based after-school programs, like SHINE, are expanding in northeastern Pennsylvania as a result of the continued support we have received from our federal legislative delegation and critical funding resources from the 21st Century Community Learning Centers program.”

SHINE is a nationally recognized after-school program operating in school districts in Carbon, Schuylkill and Luzerne. The Carbon/Schuylkill SHINE program is administered by the Lehigh Carbon Community College and provides academic support. Wilkes University is the educational host for SHINE of Luzerne County, providing administrative and educational support services for the program. Over a thousand students are involved in the SHINE programs in northeastern Pennsylvania.

Lehigh Carbon Community College will receive $2.6 million as part of Cohort 10 of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) grant program for 2019-2024. The funding will be used to expand the SHINE after-school program in Weatherly School District, Palmerton School District and Shenandoah School District.

“The Lehigh Carbon Community College SHINE Program is excited to partner with the Weatherly, Palmerton and Shenandoah school districts and expand our project-based STEAM programming to serve another 175 students,” said Rachel Miller Strucko, Director, Lehigh Carbon Community College, Carbon/Schuylkill SHINE Afterschool program.

Wilkes University will receive $2 million as part of Cohort 10 of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) grant program for 2019-2024. Senator Yudichak and former U.S. Congressman Lou Barletta brought the SHINE program to Luzerne County in 2015.

“The SHINE program at Wilkes University is excited to be chosen by the Pennsylvania Department of Education ‘s 21st Century Community Learning Centers program to receive a Cohort 10 grant. These funds will allow us to continue to provide quality STEM based after-school services to our existing sites as well as offer services to two new sites, Kistler Elementary Center in Wilkes-Barre and an elementary program at Pittston Area.  We are truly grateful to the PA Department of Education for recognizing the value of the SHINE program and providing us the resources to continue our mission to provide safe, stimulating after school programming while preparing our students for the careers of the future,” said Carol Nicholas, Director of SHINE of Luzerne County.

Additionally, the Wayne Pike Workforce Alliance will be receiving $2.3 million in 21st CCLC funds for 2019-2024. They will be replicating the Lehigh Carbon Community College SHINE Program for its rural implementation of their successful SHINE program. The program will serve 270 children annually and they will be partnering with the Luzerne SHINE program at Wilkes University for best practices, guidance and support.

“The Wayne Pike Workforce Alliance is proving exceptionally resourceful in efforts to better connect today’s students with the jobs of tomorrow.  Putting this sort of extra investment toward bolstering learning outside the classroom, for students who may not receive everything they need to compete from their regular classwork, seems a promising approach based on the results from elsewhere. Leaders across our communities are hoping such innovations will result in better prepared workers, contributing to local economic progress,” said Senator Lisa Baker (R-20).

“I’m pleased to partner with Senator Yudichak and the other stakeholders on the SHINE program. Engaging and empowering our youth is critically important and these efforts will pay dividends for decades to come,” said Representative Jonathan Fritz (R-111). Representative Michael Peifer (R-139) also worked with Senator Baker and Representative Fritz on this funding.

“On behalf of the Wayne Highlands School District, we are honored and excited about the SHINE program being implemented in our District and in Western Wayne & Wallenpaupack Area School Districts.  The combined efforts of Workforce Alliance and the community schools is a great demonstration of how great things can happen. Best of all, our students will benefit from this highly regarded program,” said Greg Frigoletto, Superintendent Wayne Highlands School District.

“Having been associated with the SHINE program since 2010, I have seen firsthand the value of investing in our youth. I’m happy to continue the expansion in Northeastern Pennsylvania,” said Lucyann Vierling, Executive Director of the Wayne Pike Workforce Alliance.

Under the 21st CCLC Cohort 10 grant, PDE awarded 74 new grants for a total of $22 million in 21st CCLC grant funds for 2019-24.

“Twenty-first Century Learning Centers grants provide critical investments for communities to expand educational opportunities for students and families,” Education Secretary Pedro A. Rivera said.  “This year’s recipients were selected with an emphasis on improving educational equity and expanding the geographic reach of Pennsylvania’s programs.  As a result, more students across the state will have access to wellness, literacy, and career and technical education programs, among others.”

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