Posted April 2, 2008

Temple University helps employees purchase new homes

Joyce Dennis
Photo by Nicole Kelly/Aperture Agency
Joyce Dennis, a bibliographic assistant in Paley Library, was one of several employees who took part in the Temple

Home Ownership Assistance Program. This month, PNC Bank and the Human Resources Department will host a series of

workshops designed to help employees take the first steps toward home ownership.

Joyce Dennis always dreamed of becoming a homeowner.

Her Logan duplex, which she shared with her mother, was a source of comfort, but she longed for a house of her own.

In October 2007, while recovering from a car accident that left her with severed tendons in her right hand, Dennis received an announcement in the mail regarding a new program: employee home ownership assistance.

“I was so happy to hear that Temple was offering to help employees purchase their first home, I knew I had to take advantage of this program,” Dennis said.

The initiative provided the extra support she needed in order to take steps toward becoming a homeowner. In December 2007, Dennis closed on her four-bedroom house in the Nicetown section of North Philadelphia.


“I strongly suggest that all employees take advantage of this program,” said Dennis, a bibliographic assistant in Paley Library, who has worked for Temple for 26 years. “It’s a great opportunity, and the process is really not difficult at all.”

In an effort to assist Temple employees in taking a step closer to making their homeownership dreams come true, PNC Bank and Temple’s Department of Human Resources will host a series of workshops in April.

Beginning on Wednesday, April 9, employees who are interested in participating in the Home Ownership Program will have access to training sessions designed to give first-time homebuyers instruction on shopping for a home, shopping for a mortgage, understating their credit and improving their credit score.

Each hour-long session will be held in Mitten Hall, 1913 North Broad St., room 250.

“This is an excellent opportunity for employees who are taking the first steps to own a home,” said Geralyn M. O’Kane, benefits manager in the Office of Human Resources. “The PNC Bank workshops give potential homebuyers an opportunity to learn the first steps they need to take in buying a home.”

President Ann Weaver Hart unveiled the university’s new Employee Home Ownership Program, which offers financial help for those who purchase a home in the communities surrounding the Main Campus and Health Sciences Center, in October 2007.

“Temple University is tied to its neighborhoods, offering many gateways through which community and university resources pass,” said President Hart in announcing the program.

To date, seven employees have successfully completed the program and several more are in the process of applying for loans.

“Our goal is continued growth and investment in our city, from Main Campus south to City Hall, and north to the Health Sciences Center,” Hart said.

To learn more about the Employee Home Ownership Program, visit

Employee Home Ownership Program

PNC Bank training

All sessions will be held in Mitten Hall, room 250

Shopping for a Home

Wednesday, April 9

1–2 p.m.

3:30–4:30 p.m.

Learn how to find the home of your dreams by identifying your housing needs and price range, knowing ways to locate homes, understanding the components of a sales contract, and learning ways to negotiate a contract.

Shopping for a Mortgage

Monday, April 14

Noon–1 p.m.

3:30–4:30 p.m.

Learn the application process and how to shop for the mortgage that best fits your needs. Learn to define key mortgage terms and determine whether you are eligible for pre-approval.

Understanding your Credit

Monday, April 21

Noon–1 p.m.

3:30–4:30 p.m.

Begin to look at a critical step in home buying: applying for and receiving loans. The class will focus on how borrowing histories and financial situations affect your ability to be approved for new loans. By the end of this session, you should be able to review and understand your credit report.

Improving your Credit

Wednesday, April 30

1– 2 p.m.

3:30– 4:30 p.m.

Learn the steps you can take to improve your credit rating and increase the chances of getting your loan request approved. You will develop an action plan of steps toward improving your credit rating.