Kishwaukee College Funding Initiatives
College costs continue to rise for students as state support for higher education continues to decrease. Foundation support is critical to the continued success of the College, the students it serves, and the local businesses that benefit from its graduates.
The College and Foundation have identified four Funding Initiatives for those wishing to support Kishwaukee College.
Supporting the Financial Needs of Our Students
In the Kishwaukee College district, approximately one in five persons are living below the poverty level. A similar proportion of Kish students (20%) have a funding gap between college costs and state and federal grant assistance. The average Kish student has $3,000 of unmet need after they receive their financial aid. On average, over 50% of Kish students meet the requirements for some form of state or federal assistance.
Students who start their college work with Adult Basic Education courses, or those in short-term occupational programs, are not eligible for financial aid. Many of our short-term programs, such as our Certified Nurse Assistant Program, produce graduates for local businesses. Other students encounter unforeseen financial challenges after enrollment, such as unexpected transportation costs, child care costs, or diminished earnings.
This funding initiative focuses on providing financial support for students, whether it is an emergency situation, or where other forms of financial support do not exist. Research has shown that support programs like this are often the difference between students staying in college or dropping out.
Developing Our Local Workforce
Many of our graduates remain members of our local community. In the past three years, 155 area businesses have hired a Kishwaukee College graduate.
The College works closely with business and industry to address local workforce needs, to provide graduates from programs and courses that are cutting edge and responsive. Sustaining innovative programming both inside and outside of the classroom requires an investment in training and research for faculty and others involved in supporting new models of teaching and learning. Working across disciplines, learning can occur in new and different ways, and meet the evolving needs of industry.
This funding initiative provides resources to support workforce driven college programs for students, such as internships and other work-based learning experiences. It also supports instructional innovation to meet the local industry needs.
Kish is committed to helping area youth plan for their future by providing seamless transitions to the next part of their career path. Working closely with our local K-12 school districts, Kish career pathways help students begin their higher education journey while still in high school. Jointly developed programs, from dual credit to learning boot camps, focus on college and career readiness.
This funding initiative will provide resources to support innovative programs that focus on specific career readiness or college level academic preparation. It will support strategies that help student transition in career pathways along a K-16 continuum.
Preserving Our Heritage
Kishwaukee College has a rich history with our local agricultural community. The College sits on 120 acres of farmland once owned by Mr. and Mrs. Ralph Byro. The original seven-member Board of Trustees included four members who farmed: LaVerne “Dutch” Johnson, Howard Andres, Fred Willrett and Howard Mullins. The first faculty member hired in 1968 was Don Higgs, agriculture instructor.
This funding initiative focuses on greenhouse facilities, programs, and services that are connected to the College’s agricultural past in contemporary agricultural careers that are part of our local economy.