Community colleges play an integral role in Illinois’ higher education system, among many other things, putting degrees within reach for more students and providing short-term degrees that improve prospects as well as transfer opportunities (which can lower the overall cost of four-year degrees). This Community College Awareness Month, amid a period when community colleges have been hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic’s effects—here in Illinois, community colleges experienced more than a 12% decline in enrollment last fall—it is critically important to continuously lift up the value and importance of our 2-year institutions to our state’s recovery, its families, children, and communities.

As you celebrate the community colleges this April, check out Choosing Illinois Community Colleges: Investing in Our Communities from PCC by PCC College and University Partnerships Equity Program Manager Paula Hanley and a guest blog from Brian Durham, Executive Director for the Illinois Community Colleges Board, on all Illinois community colleges do and have to offer, featured on Illinois Colleges Forward.