U.S. Dept. of Education Selects ICC for Nationwide Experiment on Dual Enrollment

Experiment will study the impact of awarding the Federal Pell Grant to low-income high school students and increasing their access to a college education.

Thanks to the U.S. Department of Education’s selection of Illinois Central College to participate in an experimental study on dual enrollment, more area high school students will have the opportunity to get an affordable jump-start on their college education.

The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) this morning announced that it has selected ICC as one of 44 post-secondary institutions in 23 states nationwide to take part in an experiment that for the first time will allow students taking college level courses to access the Federal Pell Grant as early as high school. Nearly 80% of the participants are community colleges.

“Dual enrollment programs are powerful ways to introduce rigorous coursework to students and show these students that they are smart enough, talented enough, and prepared enough to tackle higher education. 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.”

Late last year, ICC submitted a letter of interest to be included in the DOE’s experiment and hopes to initiate the program as early as fall.

“We are grateful to the Dept. of Education for the opportunity to participate in this groundbreaking experiment,” said ICC Interim President Bruce Budde. “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.”

Students and their parents who are interested in the program should contact the Student Services Office at [email protected].

The DOE 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.

For more information about ICC, call (309) 694-5-ICC.