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Laker Nation News

Adult Education Programs Provide Economic Opportunity at Lake Land College

Posted on September 20, 2022

National Adult Education and Literacy Week is September 18-24

National Adult Education and Literacy Week, September 18–24, underscores the continued demand for programs and services for adult students who need to improve basic skills in reading, writing, and math and obtain a high school equivalency certificate.  More than 36 million adults nationwide, including 1.2 million here in Illinois, lack basic literacy skills that limit their ability to advance in education and at work.

Lake Land College is one of 72 adult education providers offering programs funded through the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB) that improve and expand the nation’s available pipeline of workers by assisting those who lack the educational requirements to achieve gainful employment in today’s increasingly high-tech, global job market.

“We are proud to offer these opportunities and pathways to success to our students,” Lake Land College President Josh Bullock said. “It is a great feeling to know we can help serve our communities by not only providing valuable skills and resources to help students develop careers, but to assist local businesses by providing the training their skilled workers need to succeed.”

Adult education provides a path from low-income jobs and limited opportunities to middle-class wages and increased family sustainability.  Full-time workers with a high school diploma earn almost $10,000 more per year than those without a diploma.

Adult Education at Lake Land College provides a variety of services to empower adult learners by providing opportunities to gain valuable literacy, employment, and college-ready skills necessary to move forward in life. Adult Education offers free GED preparation courses for those 17 years and older.

GED classes are located in Mattoon, Effingham, Pana, Marshall, Charleston, Paris, Arthur, Sullivan and Shelbyville.

Adult Education also offers evidence based reading instruction (EBRI) classes for readers with low skill levels and English language acquisition classes (formerly ESL) at multiple sites throughout the district.

As a community service, free food service sanitation certification courses ($36 test fee) are offered in rotating locations throughout the year.

The Lake Land College Adult Education program offers two Integrated Career and Academic Preparation System (ICAPS) programs leading to certificates in welding or basic nursing assisting (BNA). All ICAPS programs are free of charge, but students must meet eligibility criteria and class space is limited. ICAPS class locations also rotate throughout the district to provide accessibility to students living in various communities.

During the 2022 academic year, Lake Land College’s Adult Education program served 211 GED and 32 ESL students. At the May 17, 2022 graduation ceremony, Lake Land College celebrated 38 GED graduates.

“Illinois community colleges are the driver for a trained workforce working with nearly 10,000 unique employers across the state.  With nearly 90 percent of the fastest growing jobs in our state requiring education beyond a high school diploma, the Illinois Community College System is the ideal place for getting on a path to a good paying career,” said ICCB Executive Director Brian Durham.

In recognition of National Adult Education and Literacy Week, Lake Land College would like to recognize the accomplishments of many of our Adult Education graduates. Several GED graduates are continuing to earn a college degree on scholarships. Felicia Depoister and Jesse Stevenson are attending Lake Land College this fall, and they were awarded the Diane Siemer Scholarship. Connie Grogg, Isabella Eggers, and Memphis Monroe received GED scholarships and are attending this fall as well.

For more information about adult education programs and services at Lake Land College, visit lakelandcollege.edu/adult-education or call 217-238-8292.

For information on adult education throughout Illinois, visit yourpathyourfuture.org.

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