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PennWest Clarion and PennWest Edinboro receive early childhood education grant funding

July 6, 2022

Early Childhood EducationPennWest Clarion and PennWest Edinboro have been awarded another round of grant funding to continue supporting courses in early childhood development and the students who enroll in them.

Clarion was awarded $105,117.40 and Edinboro $634,345.44 for FY 2022-2023, beginning July 1, 2022 through June 2023.

“This grant supports the efforts of our faculty to provide students with the credentials necessary to further their career while giving them the knowledge and skills to teach young children. I am very proud to work at a university where faculty work diligently to find ways to provide access to such life-changing education for all students,” said Dr. Gwyneth Price, dean of PennWest College of Education.

According to the Northwest PASSHE Pennsylvania Development Organization Regional Grant Field Coordinator Sheri Kurczewski, M.Ed., the grant amount covers tuition, fees, course materials, staffing, program supplies and technology to help support the pathway to credentialing and credit-bearing work for the early childhood workforce.

The numbers listed below cover tuition, fees, and course materials so eligible students may attend at zero out-of-pocket expense:

  • Clarion: A.A. tuition, fees, course materials, $105,117.40
  • Edinboro: Child Development Associate apprentice and non-apprenticeship tuition, fees, course materials (three credit-bearing courses through continuing education), $155,000
  • Edinboro: A.S. tuition, fees, course materials, $122,532.40
  • Edinboro: B.S. tuition, fees, course materials, $139,845

This is the fourth year Clarion and Edinboro have received this particular funding. The funding is a subaward from the PASSHE Pennsylvania Development Organization Regional Grant awarded to Shippensburg, explained Robin Howell, Edinboro assistant professor of early childhood and reading. Howell also serves as the Institutes of Higher Education coordinator of the PASSHE PDO Grant from the Office of Child Development and Early Learning.

“We were awarded the grant subaward in May 2019 and began child development associate courses that were credit bearing,” Howell explained. “Those participants in the program are then able to transfer nine credits from the credential toward an Associate of Science degree for preschool. Once they complete the A.S., they are able to continue for a Bachelor’s degree.”

Howell explained that students must work at least 25 hours in child care or after-school programs during each week in order to have tuition paid through the grant. When they finish, they may continue in the program they are working in or may move on to something else in education. 

Clarion students may inquire about funding by contacting Lisa Ruffner at, while Edinboro students should contact Kiley Fair at


Last Updated 7/6/22