Strengthening Student Currency in CCPE: Spotlighting Community College Early Adopters

With support from The Joyce Foundation, EdSystems launched an effort last July with Illinois community colleges and their high school partners to support new opportunities for students who earn the College and Career Pathway Endorsement (CCPE) in high school. This includes currency opportunities that are meant to incentivize student endorsement completion and increase the number of students matriculating into postsecondary programs aligned to their secondary pathways. Throughout Illinois, community colleges, alongside their high school counterparts, are creating unique opportunities in the industry sectors of manufacturing, engineering, technology, and trades (METT) and health sciences technology (HST). We celebrate their preliminary currency opportunities below.

Illinois Valley Community College

Community Partners:
  • Illinois Valley Community College
  • LaMoille High School
  • Hall Township High School
  • Depue High School
  • Starved Rock Associates for Vocational and Technical Education, L-P Area Career Center (LPACC), EFE #190
  • LaSalle County Regional Office of Education
  • HHC, Inc. Mendota IL
  • OSF St. Elizabeth Medical Center Ottawa IL
  • Mid-America Council of Carpenters
  • BEST, Inc.

Illinois Valley Community College will provide tuition waivers for one three-credit-hour course to up to 20 students who earn the CCPE on their transcript in either HST or METT, which has a financial value of approximately $400 for students. This tuition waiver will help decrease the economic costs of postsecondary enrollment for CCPE graduates. This course is provided to students through a collaboration between Illinois Valley Community College and its Foundation Office. 

Parkland Community College

High School Partners:
  • Champaign Community Unit School District 4
  • Rantoul Township High School District 193
  • Education for Employment System #330
  • Monticello High School
  • Carle Foundation Hospital

Parkland Community College is committed to gender and racial diversity in health professions and Career and Technical Education programs. CCPE students who earn one industry-recognized credential in certified nurse assistant, emergency medical technician, or sterile processing technician while in high school will have the opportunity to receive guaranteed placement in the nursing or allied health pathway, which has a selective admissions process. Five seats will also be allocated for students who complete all of the following:

  • CCPE in HST; 
  • High school chemistry (alternative: complete CHE 100 Introduction to Chemistry at Parkland); and

High school students who are working to complete the pathway endorsement in METT will:

  • Gain priority placement toward at least one industry-recognized credential at the end of high school (completion of industry-recognized/Parkland credential requires continued enrollment at Parkland beyond high school). Through a partnership with Parkland College and EFE #330 students who complete Parkland credit through the Early College and Career Academy are eligible for priority placement in available internships or pre-apprenticeships.
  • Obtain guaranteed part-time job placement while in high school through partnerships with local employers. Each high school will maintain a list of the agreements they have with employers, and Parkland College supports the creation of such partnerships through existing program advisory committees.
  • Receive special considerations for registered apprenticeships with manufacturing employers. 

Sauk Valley Community College

Community Partners:
  • Sauk Valley Community College
  • Whiteside Area Career Center
  • Sauk Valley Chamber of Commerce
  • Regional Office of Education #47
  • Amboy CUSD #272
  • RiverBend CUSD #2
  • Katherine Shaw Bethea Hospital
  • CGH Medical Center
  • FHN Memorial Hospital

High school students who earn the CCPE and take BIO 108 will receive additional application points toward admission into the LPN program, which has a selective admissions process. BIO 108 is considered a gateway course for the nursing program. To increase class persistence rates, the institution will provide extra support for students who enroll in this class. These supports include an asynchronous “How to Be Successful in Bio 108” mini-course, tutoring, access to office hours for BIO 108 during the summer, and a faculty mentor. In addition, the course cost, textbook, and lab manual for BIO 108 will be provided, with an estimated financial value of over $1,000 to students. Paid tuition and book costs will alleviate financial barriers for low-income students and for those students who may not qualify for aid.

Expanding Currency Statewide

As we celebrate the good work of these institutions, we are excited to announce that we are working with additional community colleges to bolster their currency options. Our goal is to increase CCPE district implementation and student enrollment statewide. We will share updates on the progression of our community college partner currency offerings by May 2023.

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