2020-2021 Innovation of the Year Award Winner: Collin College

Improving Access to Health Care for Students and Part-Time Employees

COVID-19 has brought to the forefront the importance of access to health care, especially for Collin College students, adjunct faculty, and part-time staff employees who do not have access to health insurance benefits. In July 2020, the college’s board of trustees approved an investment of up to $750,000 for a new benefit plan—CougarCare—which provides telehealth and mental health coverage at no cost to students, adjunct faculty, and part-time staff employees.

An American College Health Association study shows that some of the top factors affecting students’ academic performance are stress (30 percent), anxiety (21.8 percent), sleep difficulties (21 percent), cold/flu/sore throat (15.1 percent), and depression (13.5 percent). Collin College’s implementation of the new telehealth benefits is an important step toward relieving these stressors that are especially in focus during a pandemic. At the same time, the new benefit bolsters Collin College’s goal to become the college of choice for our students and the employer of choice for our adjunct faculty and part-time staff employees.


  • Neil Matkin, District President
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