Open Doors to Quality Education

It has been a very busy week here at ICC and as we prepare to welcome our students for the Spring Semester, I am reminded about the excitement and fear that go along with a new start — whether it is beginning at a new school, moving to a new area, or starting a new relationship. As I have helped students find their way to their classrooms over the years, I heard many different stories about what brings students to college. We have returning students who may have grown discontent with their previous careers or who have had the decision made for them with plant closures and downsizing. We have students who always have known they would go to college and some who never thought they could go to college who now realize that they can. We have students who have sent their own children off to school and are ready for “their turn” in education.

Hearing these stories (and many more) make working at a community college so rewarding and are what make ICC such an amazing place to learn. We have open doors and offer higher education at an affordable price right here in our community. Sometimes people think that open door means lower quality and I am proud to say that isn’t the case. Every year we receive feedback from universities that show the success that our transfer students have after they transfer. Every year, ICC students do as well or better than other community college students at the 4-year university. Student often come back to ICC to share how their education at ICC has prepared them for great things—check out the Potential Unleashed series available on our You Tube channel. Our local employers can also attest to the high quality of our programs, especially those in the Career and Technical areas. Combine all of this with the great opportunities for an international experience right here central Illinois—we have a robust study abroad program and our East Peoria campus is proud to house the International Center and the Chinese Language Institute. Did you know that in any given semester, approximately 200 international students representing 55 different countries attend ICC?

Seize the promise of the new year and make your fresh start—whether it is taking a step towards a new career, learning something new through a class with the PDI (Professional Development Institute), starting a new exercise plan with our state-of-the-art Fitness Center, or making our campus a better place by taking the time to share a smile or a conversation with a person you’ve never met. The sun is shining and it is going to be a great semester!