Pictured: State Representative Thaddeus Jones (back right) recently visited SSC to tour the adult education area and see the fruits of his legislative fund appropriations at the college. Jones and SSC Chairman Frank M. Zuccarelli (back left) visited with Community Education staff and students (seated from left to right) Natley White of Dolton, DeShana Stanton of Calumet City, and MaKaela Coleman of South Holland.
SOUTH HOLLAND, ILState Representative Thaddeus Jones (D-29th District) visited South Suburban College (SSC) last week to tour the adult education areas of the college. Jones recently secured a legislative award of $225,000 to enable SSC's Division of Community Education to begin creating state-of-the-art technological classrooms for its English as a Second Language (ESL), Adult Basic Education (ABE) and Adult Secondary Education (ASE) programs. Jones joined SSC Chairman Frank Zuccarelli in visiting with staff and students while seeing classroom technology upgrades firsthand at the South Holland campus.
"Providing those in our community with educational opportunities is the most effective way for people to build a better life for themselves," said Representative Jones. "It is with that in mind that I worked in Springfield to provide grant funding to improve and modernize South Suburban College's GED program. This will allow more adult students the opportunity to succeed in the classroom and in the workforce."
Approximately half of the funds to date have been used to purchase Epson Interactive White Boards, classroom projectors, and teacher computer stations with Internet access for 5 classrooms; 72 laptops and 5 mobile laptop computerized charging carts; and 60 new student tables. With these funds, five of nine stationary classrooms at the Main Campus are now completely remodeled with cutting edge technologies. SSC plans to remodel the other four classrooms with the remaining funds, and to eventually provide the laptops and carts for offsite locations as more funding becomes available.
"The smart boards and laptops have made the classroom more engaging for students, and it is easier for us to cover a lot of information together in each class session," said DeShana Stanton, GED student at SSC. "I tried other programs in the past and had given up, but the SSC program gave me the opportunity to get my education back on track and the instructors have made me feel right at home here."
SSC has more aggressively pursued grant funds and alternate funding sources in recent years in an effort to improve infrastructure and provide instructors and students with the most effective and current technologies available. The SSC Board of Trustees recently passed a resolution at their January Board Meeting to recognize and affirm Representative Jones' commitment to education for his constituents and residents of College District 510.
"We are very pleased and thankful to Representative Jones for securing these funds for SSC, and it is a pleasure to see the results and hear from our students on how it has improved their classroom experience," said Chairman Zuccarelli. "Our goals are the sameto help our residents improve their education and employment. We look forward to continue working together with all of our elected officials to help and improve our community."
Representative Jones added, "Education is one of my top priorities and I have seen firsthand how South Suburban College is providing a quality education experience that is directly benefiting students and their families in the Southland. I look forward to continuing to work with Chairman Frank Zuccarelli and the SSC Board of Trustees."
In Fiscal Year 2013, SSC serviced 803 students through adult education programs including 70 students that received their GED certificates, many of whom moved on to their postsecondary education at SSC.
For more information, please contact Jane Ellen Stocker, Vice President of Enrollment and Community Education, at (708) 596-2000, ext. 2227, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.ssc.edu . SSC's Main Campus is located at 15800 South State Street, South Holland, Illinois.