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Grant Showcase

Every quarter, the Grants Office will feature a program at College of DuPage that has been funded by a grant. These programs are just a few of the many outstanding initiatives supported by external grant funding.

Perkins V Postsecondary Career and Technical Education (CTE) at College of DuPage

Through the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), College of DuPage receives almost $3 million annually in federal and state funding from the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V). This legislation delivers federal support to state and local high school and college CTE programs that provide students the knowledge, skills, and experience necessary to succeed in today's competitive marketplace. COD offers essential CTE programming for students, from skilled trades to applied science and technology programs. The funding received by COD supports over 250 CTE degrees and certificate programs, including everything from accounting, computer and internetworking technologies, electronics, HVACR, manufacturing, and welding. Perkins funding supports CTE at all levels, from professional development opportunities for faculty and staff, to equipment purchases to promote hands-on learning as well as skills development programs (such as STEMCON) for students.

Thanks to the generous support of Perkins funding over the years, many successful projects have been completed at COD. For example, in 2018 a group Architecture Design + Build studio students, led by Mark A. Pearson, AIA, designed and built the Fuel Garden and Russell R. Kirt Prairie Pavilion over 8 weeks with $10,000. The pavilion serves as both a beautiful physical gathering space in the prairie as well as a symbol bringing awareness to the COD Fuel Garden.

A different program supported by Perkins funding is the Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration (HVACR) program at COD led by Bob Clark. Over the past five years, Dr. Clark has expanded the program to include state-of-the-art HVAC electronic control trainers for COD's lab facility, which were designed by Dr. Clark. These trainers teach students HVAC skills and competencies through the construction and building of the trainers. As a result of these successful teaching innovations, Dr. Clark has been featured in multiple trade articles, and has been honored as both the Illinois ACTE Teacher of the Year and Regional ACTE Teacher of the Year. He was also nominated for the National ACTE Teacher of the Year.

Jonita Ellis, CTE Program Improvement Manager, oversees and coordinates Perkins activities at COD to ensure faculty, staff, and students are making the most out of the CTE programs offered here. We appreciate the hard work and dedication that Ms. Ellis and the Academic Affairs team dedicates to executing the CTE programs supported by Perkins!

Further Reading:

Illinois Cooperative Work Study Program at College of DuPage

The Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) hosts the Illinois Cooperative Work Study Program (ICWS), a grant program that " designed to enhance public-private sector partnerships, expand internship opportunities, reduce student reliance on loans, encourage permanent employment of Illinois graduates in Illinois, and provide links between academic programs and employment." Internships are increasingly important to College of DuPage students in applying their education and gaining real-world experience in the workplace, and ultimately securing employment after graduation.

Since 2010, the COD Career Services Department has received a grant from IBHE to support a program that coordinates internships for COD students with regional employers. Krystina LaSorsa, Interim Manager of Career Services, coordinates partner employers and student interns to ensure positive, relevant, and successful internship experiences. This year, COD was awarded over $44,000 to support the program which supplements employer wages paid to COD interns. Both employers and student-interns have reported their belief in the value and importance of this program and the experience it provides to our students. We appreciate the work that Ms. LaSorsa dedicates to this grant program!

Further Reading:

We are always happy to work with any faculty, staff, or administrator who is interested in learning more about participating in or leading a grant-funded project. Please contact Marcia Frank or Andrew Luce to learn more!


Contact Information

Marcia Frank
Grants Manager
(630) 942-4611

Andrew Luce
Grants Specialist
(630) 942-4613