Community College Covers Tuition for Dual-Credit Students

Senators Promote Partnerships to Boost Affordability

Elgin Community College in Illinois will cover tuition and fees for the upcoming academic year for 2021 high school graduates who earned college credits through Elgin’s dual-enrollment courses.

The goal of the program is to ease financial burdens on local students and their families during the pandemic, according to a press release from the college issued Wednesday.

“Even with our commitment to affordable tuition, we want to remove as many financial barriers as possible,” Rodrigo Lopez, assistant dean of Elgin’s college in high school programs, said in the release. “Students can stay close to home or stay engaged in advancing their education while pursuing other endeavors, knowing they are benefiting from a high-quality education and not having to worry about cost.”

Financial aid officers at the college will call 485 eligible students to make them aware of the offer and to help interested high school graduates enroll.

Elgin president David Sam initially announced the effort at a ceremony in May honoring local students who participated in Accelerate College, the institution’s dual-enrollment program.

Elgin, like most community colleges, experienced an enrollment decrease during the pandemic. Enrollment fell from 8,272 students in spring 2020 to 7,751 students this past spring, a 14 percent drop, according to the Elgin Observer. However, the college reported a more than 27 percent enrollment increase this summer compared to last year.

While “encouraged” by the growth, “as we head into the fall semester, we understand that our students are still facing many challenges,” Sam said in a press release.

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