Tennessee Nonprofit Raises Over $2 Million for Undocumented College Students

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In less than a month, a nonprofit organization in Tennessee raised more than $2 million to cover college tuition costs for undocumented students in the state. 

The Equal Chance for Education (ECE) is one of many nonprofits across the country that collects funds to support the education of undocumented students, most of whom do not have access to state or federal financial aid. 

The organization recently received large gifts of $200,000 and $1 million from two anonymous donors. An additional $200,000, added up from dozens of donations, was gifted in just the past week, according to The Nashville Tennessean

ECE also received money from TheDream.Us, a national organization that funds undocumented college students.

“I will always be in awe of the generosity of ECE supporters, in Nashville and throughout the U.S.,” ECE Executive Director Molly Haynes said in a statement. “After these most recent gifts and commitments, notably, the $1 million gift pledged, ECE will be able to enroll more dedicated and deserving scholars this fall.”

Since its founding in 2014, the nonprofit has worked with 20 Tennessee colleges and universities to ensure tuition does not exceed $10,500 a year for its students. ECE provides scholarships that cover 60 percent of that cost, and students are selected based on financial needs, career aspirations, and academic success. 

A total of 132 undocumented students have graduated college with the help of ECE’s scholarships.