A Fortunately, Unfortunately Tale that Ends Well

Eric Brown

Eric Brown, an adult student from Hanover Park, was inspired to study sign language interpreting after becoming friends with a deaf man at church.

Fortunately...to gain more experience in the field, Eric transitioned from his job delivering pizzas to working for Ron, a deaf and blind man who stocks vending machines. Eric helps Ron with his communication needs and assists in stocking the vending machines. The pay for the new job was a slight increase over his pizza delivery job, but it also created a challenge for Eric. Prior to the new job, Eric had qualified for the Pell Grant, which covered all his academic costs with a bit left over for living expenses. These few extra dollars helped make it possible for him to pursue his academic goals.

Unfortunately...due to the small increase in his income, his academic assistance was cut in half. β€œIt has been a struggle to keep my head above water financially in my endeavor to continue my education, to work, and to support myself,” noted Eric.

Fortunately, the Harper Educational Foundation had just the scholarship for Eric, the Jacob and Iris Wolf Endowed Sign Language Interpreting Scholarship. β€œI am so grateful for [the] financial support as it not only alleviates many financial pressures, but fuels my determination to stay the course and become certified, while I continue working professionally and volunteering my spare time with deaf people!”