P.E.O. EDUCATIONAL LOAN FUND | ELF
This motivation led to five ELF recipients in one year. Often the process of completing the application is overwhelming for the applicant. Chapter EN members are encouraged to stay vigilant and assist eligible applicants, assuring them the process is not complicated. This support helps the applicant to feel confident in suggesting ELF to fellow students. ELF Superstar Chapters
by Marti Ramsey, P.E.O. Educational Loan Fund Board of Trustees
“Never stop talking about P.E.O. and ELF!” is Chris Isenhart’s mantra. As Chapter AQ, Cape Mary Court House, New Jersey, P.E.O. Educational Loan Fund (ELF) chair, Chris encourages all members to adopt this philosophy. To begin, she provides all members with the ELF requirements and suggestions of who would be worthy candidates. By sharing
“Never stop talking about P.E.O. and ELF!” – Chris Isenhart
When Susan Pollock, Chapter G, Ann Arbor, Michigan, was initiated, she was not familiar with the P.E.O. philanthropies. Becoming the ELF chair for her chapter, Susan found her passion for supporting these philanthropies. Now serving as chapter president, she continues the chapter’s practice of placing all new sisters on the philanthropy committee to familiarize them with the projects. This practice, along with a simple description of the projects in the yearbook, gives members the inspiration to find applicants. Helping dispel the misconception of a chapter having to repay a loan if the applicant doesn’t, led Chapter G to have 17 ELF recipients from 2015 through 2021, with a total of five in 2020. Their success of finding applicants is simple—talk with those whom you know and listen to others talking. Following up on their P.E.O. Program for Continuing Education (PCE) recipients has also led to ELF applicants. Help your chapter be successful in locating, recommending and interviewing ELF applicants. Thoughtfully listen to family members, daughters of acquaintances and neighbors as they speak about educational pursuits. Assure the applicant the process is easy and give support when necessary. If a chapter struggles with completing the application on the computer, enlist the assistance of another member or friend to enter the information. Let’s go find the other ELF applicants!
the P.E.O. mission, being a presence in the community doing volunteer activities and maintaining contact with former recipients, Chapter AQ had nine ELF recipients in one year. Sharing the P.E.O. mission of educating women opens the door to an initial discussion with prospective applicants. Volunteering at a community running event provides members an opportunity to share about P.E.O. and ELF. AQ sister Arlene Ostrander enjoys maintaining contact with the ELF recipients, leaving open the means of communication for the recipients to recommend other students as possible applicants. Chapter AQ has looked outside their community to provide applicants, an additional source many sisters do not realize is possible. Reaching out to friends and relatives in other states has helped increase their number of recipients. Chapter AQ’s ELF recipient Randi Isenhart, a doctoral student at University of Pennsylvania, says, “I’m really grateful for the ELF loan, as it will make my final year or so as a graduate student much more manageable!” Inspired by the applicants’ stories, Chris now plans to approach the local community college to find more recommendations. Currently, Chapter AQ has three scheduled ELF interviews. Chapter EN, Grand Rapids, Minnesota, is fortunate to have sisters who embrace speaking with former students, relatives and daughters of acquaintances to widen the possibility for ELF applicants. Chapter EN member Bonnie Henriksen states hearing the applicants’ stories motivates the chapter to keep looking for future recommendations.
July–August 2022 | THE P.E.O. RECORD
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