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HCC, AIC Sign Historic Housing Agreement

HOLYOKE — Representatives from American International College (AIC) and Holyoke Community College (HCC) signed a historic agreement that will allow HCC students to live in residence halls and apartments on the AIC campus in Springfield.

“This is definitely a momentous event for both AIC and HCC,” Sharale Mathis, HCC vice president of Academic and Student Affairs, said during the signing ceremony at HCC. “As we know, our students come in with a whole host of challenges, and it’s fortunate to have such a partnership with AIC that will help us address their basic needs.”

The agreement calls for AIC to discount its room rates for HCC students, making college housing available and affordable to community-college students for the first time at AIC. The housing option will be offered to all HCC students 18 years and older who are enrolled full- or part-time and in good academic standing.

“I think today is a hallmark on how public and private institutions truly should work together,” AIC President Hubert Benitez said. “This is a prime example of two teams, two institutions, that have a similar mission of providing access and opportunity.”

According to the agreement, HCC students who opt to live at AIC will have access to other amenities there as well, including health services, the college library, laundry facilities, and a gym. A food plan and parking are also available for an additional cost. There is no age limit for students, couples can live together, and campus apartments are also a possibility.

The AIC housing option will allow HCC to expand its recruiting range of student athletes and might also benefit international students, as well as those struggling to find affordable places to live.

“We’ve been committed to addressing housing insecurity and homelessness for many years, and looking for different ways to strengthen partnerships in support of our students has been a primary goal,” HCC President Christina Royal said. “This agreement does more than just provide housing for our students; it will also give them a taste of college life beyond HCC. It gives them a window into what their futures will look like when they think about transfer possibilities and helps immerse them in another college environment, which are all big wins for our students.”

HCC students could be moving into AIC housing as early as August for the fall semester, which begins at HCC in September.

“The more we can create these bridges, the more we can create and strengthen these pipelines, the better our communities will be served,” Benitez said.