Mayor Rahm Emanuel and City Colleges of Chicago Chancellor Cheryl Hyman announced the Chicago Star Scholarship in October 2014 with the promise that more Chicago Public High School students shall be able to pursue the dream of college without accumulating burdensome debt. Through Chicago STAR Scholarship, City Colleges of Chicago will provide scholarships in the form of tuition, fee and book waivers to qualifying high school graduates, ensuring they can earn their associate degree at City Colleges of Chicago with no out of pocket costs.
“The Chicago STAR Scholarships will open more doors of opportunity for more students in the City of Chicago,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Every student who is willing to work hard should have access to a quality education, regardless of whether they can afford it or not. This new scholarship program will remove a financial barrier to college and give many more students in Chicago a ticket to the middle class that a college education provides.”
Any CPS high school graduate who has a 3.0 GPA or higher, places into college-level math and English, and enrolls in one of CCC’s pathways will be eligible for the Chicago STAR Scholarship. The pathway program helps students navigate the educational system and encourages them to focus on a clear career path and achieve their goals.
Known locally as UIC, the University of Illinois-Chicago recently stepped up to sweeten the pot for recipients of the Chicago Star Scholarship, which gives free community college tuition to high-performing city students. UIC has offered guaranteed admission and up to $5,000 in support for those who earn an associate’s degree through the program.
Mayor Emanuel promised to be knocking on the doors of others to talk about their “responsibility to the kids of Chicago.” Emanuel made it clear that he wants higher ed support and he wants it soon, saying, “It would be easy to step back, observe the problem, study the problem, have a couple papers written on the problem, have a symposium on the problem, discuss what people should do about the problem and then go for a break and have a cup of coffee.”