If it wasn’t for Federal Pell Grants, paying for college would have been a far more difficult challenge, and now more students than ever can access this critical resource!
Last month, Illinois Central College announced they have been selected by the Department of Education as one of 44 post-secondary from 23 states, to receive an experimental pilot grant that extends Pell Grant support to high school students for the first time in history! Through this pilot, dual-enrollment students in ICC’s district can apply for Pell Grant funds to cover the dual-enrollment costs that are often a barrier for students.
“Dual enrollment programs are game changers for all students – especially those are first-generation or from low-income families,” said Education Under Secretary Ted Mitchell. “Through this experiment, we hope to learn how the availability of Pell Grants affects student participation and success in dual enrollment programs.”
“The program aligns well with our focus on student success and our long-term strategy to accelerate the completion or transfer of our students district-wide, particularly those who have historically been under served” said ICC Interim President Bruce Budde. The Department of Education expects the program to launch in the fall of 2016 with a total investment of up to $20 million in the 2016-17 award year and benefitting up to 10,000 low income high school students nationwide.
Expanding access to early-college has proven widely successful for both public education systems and community colleges across the country, increasing student graduation, enrollment, and attainment rates (AIR, 2013). However, many students face barriers to early college credit due to tuition and other financial barriers, now with this added resource students in our region have another opportunity to achieve their career aspirations!
For students and their parents who are interested in the program they should contact Illinois Central College’s Student Services Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.