College Football Playoff Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teacher Tampa Bay Legacy Initiative

Author: College Football Playoff Foundation

Posted on: January 10, 2018

The College Football Playoff Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers initiative, which injected over $1,000,000 into the Tampa Bay education community during the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship, announced on January 10, 2018 a legacy investment of $200,000 geared toward  supporting and strengthening the region’s college-going culture. The College Football Playoff Foundation, is teaming up again with the Tampa Bay Sports Commission, Helios Education Foundation, the Florida College Access Network and the LEAP College Access Network to further enhance College Ready Tampa Bay initiatives in partnership with the tri-county school districts and the local and state college access networks.

These efforts will continue to support teachers and schools that build a college-going culture for their students, help students apply to college and seek financial aid, and celebrate graduating seniors’ next educational steps. Additionally, this investment will help advance the region’s ability to assess the intended outcomes of such efforts by tracking graduation rates and how to close the “summer melt” gap through extensive data research. 

“We are so grateful to be in a position to extend our partnership with the Tampa Bay Sports Commission,” said Britton Banowsky, Executive Director of the College Football Playoff Foundation. “Our work last year and the community wide impact that we made was extraordinary. There is no doubt that the educational opportunities provided for the thousands of area students will make a big difference in their lives and in the community.

Furthermore, this legacy initiative also leverages a powerful community effort to remove financial barriers for Tampa Bay’s future educators through scholarships, further building on the Extra Yard for Teachers mission by helping tomorrow’s teachers gain those first few yards toward a teaching career. The College Football Playoff Foundation is designating half of their total investment towards education scholarships. Helios Education Foundation will match those funds on a 2-to-1 basis through their existing support of LEAP, Tampa Bay’s College Access Network, equaling $300,000 in total scholarship dollars.  Given the scholarship disbursement of $5,500 per student, this investment will support over 54 FUSE students seeking a degree in education.

“A year after the event, it’s incredible to see the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship still having an enormous impact on our community’s teachers and students,” said Rob Higgins, Executive Director of the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. “We could not be more grateful to the College Football Playoff Foundation, Helios Education Foundation, the Florida College Access Network and the LEAP College Access Network for their continued partnership, support and thought leadership.”

"Education is an investment and not an expense," said Paul Luna, President and CEO, Helios Education Foundation. "Alongside these great partners, we are excited to invest in Tampa Bay's future educators and grow our region's college-going culture."

Overall, the College Football Playoff Foundation investment augmented by Helios Education Foundation’s match, equates to a total of $400,000 invested back into the region’s education community in support of Extra Yard for Teachers in Tampa Bay.

“We are extremely grateful to the College Football Playoff Foundation and our wonderful local partners for supporting the continued college access work happening in the Tampa Bay region,” said Marlene Spalten, President & CEO of the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, which is the backbone for the LEAP network.  “All our LEAP Tampa Bay partners believe that education truly ‘balances the playing field,’ so this support for students, teachers and counselors, and future teachers is a vital investment in our future.”  

“Tampa Bay’s commitment to building a strong college-going culture is a model for how community leaders, educators and organizations can work together to transform the lives of students and families through education beyond high school,” said Laurie Meggesin, Executive Director of the Florida College Access Network.  “College Football Playoff Foundation’s and the Helios Education Foundation’s support is sure to have a lasting impact on the region as a whole, and we are grateful to them and our Tampa Bay partners for their steadfast dedication to serving Tampa Bay students.”

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