Legislation signed into law last week by Gov. J.B. Pritzker expands already required Black history coursework to include pre-enslavement of Black people, why Black people came to be enslaved and the American Civil Rights renaissance. The new law – a key part of the Illinois Black Caucus’ legislative agenda – also increases the percentage of grant funds prioritized for Black males and incorporates consideration of financial need in awarding grants, among other improvements to higher education.
Eleven Austin high school students out of nearly 600 citywide have been accepted into the Chicago Scholars program. Since 1996, about 900 students have completed the program, which provides support throughout college and once the participants have graduated.
James Nnabuihe graduated as valedictorian last month from Austin College & Career Academy. He will be the third sibling to attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he plans to study math.
High school seniors can start completing the Free Application for Financial Student Aid form. All seniors attending Michele Clark Academic Prep Magnet High School are required to fill out the FAFSA, apply to at least 10 colleges and submit at least two scholarship applications.
West Side residents now can apply to take a 32-week college-credit program at Austin Town Hall starting this fall. Students in the Odyssey Project study with professors from local universities and can earn up to six transferable college credits from Bard College. The application deadline to apply for the free program is Aug. 15.
Marquise Linnear is studying math at the University of Illinois after overcoming some challenges and getting help from Bottom Line, a nonprofit that helps first-generation students from low-income backgrounds attend and graduate from college.