Illinois community colleges unveil public awareness campaign
April 11, 2008, SPRINGFIELD -- A coalition of higher education
advocates has unveiled its public awareness campaign designed to highlight the state's community college system.
"We are beginning a campaign to articulate the benefits of a community college education -- not just to the students
who attend, but to lawmakers, businesses, and the public, who benefit from the educated workforce the colleges
produce," said Kathy Wessel, president of the Illinois Community College Trustees Association and a trustee at
the College of DuPage.
Members of the Coalition for Community College Funding include ICCTA, the Illinois Presidents Council,
the Illinois Council of Community College Administrators, the Cook County College Teacher's Union, and
the Community College Student Advisory Committee. The coalition was formed to advance the cause of
Illinois community colleges, which have suffered from declining state revenues.
Kicking off the campaign was the unveiling of billboards across Illinois featuring the message
"Community Colleges: Illinois' Best Investment." The Coalition has also produced postcards citing data from
a 2007 economic impact study that shows the many benefits that Illinois community colleges provide to the state.
"When the taxpayers of Illinois invest in our community colleges, they are investing in the neighborhoods and
communities in which they live," said Perry Buckley, president of the Cook County College Teachers Union.
"In fact, according to our community college impact study, 95% of our students who attend community college
tend to stay in Illinois."
Terry Bruce, president of the Illinois Presidents Council, stated, "Our future as a state depends on the
quality of our education systems. If we shortchange our community colleges, we are shortchanging our students
and all of our futures."
In future weeks, the Coalition will bring its message directly to the Illinois General Assembly as part of
Community College Lobby Day activities on April 30 in Springfield.
Illinois Community College Trustees Association|
401 E. Capitol Ave., Suite 200
Springfield, IL 62701-1711
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