Supporting retention through basic needs and emergency grants

Your support of our Student Relief Fund will assist our students in overcoming financial obstacles which could derail their ability to complete their education. For most community college students, an unexpected expense such as loss of a job, health crisis, car problem, etc., can impact a student's ability to stay in college. In addition, some students exhaust their financial aid before completion of their degree, but may only need one or two classes to complete their goal. For students enrolled in career technical education programs, they may be required to purchase tools and uniforms, pay for licensing exams, or travel to job training (internships) sites. These expenses are often not covered by their financial aid, but are essential to student success. Chemeketa’s Student Relief Fund can help remove unforeseen financial barriers for our most vulnerable, low-income students in order for them to complete their education and reach their full potential.

Your contribution to the Student Relief Fund supports students through three critical avenues; our on-campus food pantries, emergency grants, and basic needs resources, including access to the Chemeketa Closet. Read more about these vital services and a few student stories below.

Questions? Give us a call at 503.399.5148 
or send an e-mail.

She was on the dean’s list despite living on the streets with her 11 year old daughter for over two years. Lonni reached out to the student relief fund for help with a deposit on an apartment after being approved for section 8 housing. With your help, Lonni was able get her and her daughter into a safe and secure home.

A full-time, first-generation nursing student and mother of two was on the verge of graduating. Brianna had a job secured after graduation but was unable to pay for her Nursing License. Brianna was awarded funds to pay her licensing fee.

A fire at a nearby apartment complex left Liliana's family, including her two young children, with nothing but the clothes on their back. Their sense of security, comfort and safety was all taken away. Liliana was in her first year of college and was determined to stay in school. College staff and community members rallied around the family to provide needed essentials, clothing and furniture to help replace some of what was lost. In addition to these donated items, the Student Relief Fund was able to provide her family with financial support to help them rebuild their lives.

Jeffery was just days away from completing his Associate of Arts Transfer degree when his bus pass expired. The student relief fund provided him with a bus pass so he was able to make it to finals and complete his degree.

Campus Food Pantries


Provides students and their families food boxes and toiletries through our Salem and Yamhill Valley Campus Food Pantries. Our pantries supported 1,847 adults and 836 children during the 2021-2022 academic year. Due to the rise in inflation and the ending of covid-related financial assistance, we anticipate serving even more students in the coming year.

Emergency Funds


These grants are intended to assist students who are unable to meet an immediate and essential expense because of an unforeseen, temporary hardship. If a student has to choose between paying for an unexpected bill, such as a car repair, a medical bill, food, rent, child care, or books and tuition, they are likely to withdraw from their classes.

Basic Need Resources


Basic needs are essential resources needed on a daily/regular basis including food, transportation, clothing, childcare, etc. This fund supports short-term needs such as purchasing grab-and-go food for food insecure students, expanding our Chemeketa Closet, assembling and distributing hygiene kits, and purchasing bus passes for students who struggle with getting to campus.

Chemeketa Closet


Chemeketa Closet provides professional clothing to students at no cost. We have students who cannot afford professional clothing for job interviews, internships, practicums, networking, etc., creating a false narrative of unprofessionalism. Removing this obstacle allows our students to focus on their career and networking goals.

The goal of the program is to get students the help they need as expeditiously as possible, while also connecting them to the wide range of ongoing supports available.

Students are required to meet with a program counselor for a brief interview to determine eligibility and need. From there, dedicated staff are able to refer students to sustainable sources of support available from internal and external partners which may help them avoid future emergencies, including SNAP benefits, healthcare, childcare grants, employment assistance, financial aid, and scholarships.

Thank you to our top community partners

Granting organizations

Wells Fargo Foundation

Marion Polk Food Share

Olive Bridge Grant Fund

Chemeketa Community College Foundation

4000 Lancaster DR NE

PO Box 14007

Salem, Oregon 97309

503.399.5148  |  503.365.4747