Illinois Central College leading $18.7 million state workforce equity project

Digital Originals

PEORIA, Ill. — Illinois Central College is partnering with Illinois Community College Board and deputy majority leader and State Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth (D-Peoria), to launch a state-funded Workforce Equity Grant.

ICC will receive $1.85 million of the $18.7 million grant. The remaining funds will be spread out between 14 other Illinois community colleges.

The ICC Workforce Equity project is focused on improving workforce inclusivity by providing a living-wage job for adults living in low-income areas. The end goal for this project is for involved students to secure a full-time job paying at least 30% above the regional living wage.

“This initiative allows ICC the opportunity to remove barriers for the underserved and disadvantaged. It allows us to meet students where they are, and get them where they want to be,” said ICC President Dr. Sheila Quirk-Bailey. “When adults earn credentials with labor market value, it not only changes the trajectory of their lives, but also the lives of their families; while growing the workforce, expanding businesses and creating a more vibrant regional economy.”

The initiative will train individuals in high demand in occupations of Welder, CDL Truck Driver, Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), and CNC operator, Plus many more. ICC will use Earn and Learn and Workforce Readiness skills training. Local community-based organizations will assist with case management and wrap-around support services.

Illinois is home to 48 colleges in 39 community college districts.

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