HARRISBURG, Ill. (Sept. 28, 2021) – Southeastern Illinois College was recently notified by the Department of Education it has received a $2.2 million federal grant over five years to improve student success using student success coaches and creative learning enhancement initiatives to dramatically enhance services.
“This grant is a phenomenal gift to come at a time when we are building back enrollment after the COVID-19 shutdown last year and so many students are struggling after a year of remote learning in high schools last year,” said SIC President Jonah Rice.
“This five-year grant allows us to enhance student success through academic coaches who will engage students who may need more encouragement, access to learning support, financial support, or even life skills support.”
Dr. Karen Weiss, Vice-President of Academics at SIC was the grant project lead assigned by Rice, and she received word on Monday, September 27th of the award.
“Our team here at SIC tried for this award in the past and narrowly missed out last time, but we modified a few of our initiatives and here we are—scoring a win for students with this grant!”
College officials will begin to fill four full-time positions that come with the grant.
The first position is the director of the whole project who will oversee the learning enhancement coordinator who in turn monitors the success coach and the technology specialist who will track all the progress of students who benefit from the grant.
Rice said the grant also has funds to modify workspace for the best student experience possible for these services.
The added benefit in the grant is a set-aside portion of funds that will match dollar-to-dollar raised by the SIC Foundation for the College’s Endowment Funds.
“We will be reaching out to our community and I know they will come through like they did the last time we were awarded one of these grants when I started my presidency,” said Rice.
That kind of a return stays local, pays local, and is good for our local economy, he added.
“We will have some special events and activities planned in the coming years to help achieve our goal of raising $250,000 or more for that dollar match program.”