The recent announcement of a stopgap budget from Springfield provides welcome news for Illinois higher education. It also presents an opportunity to remind our community that Parkland College continues to maintain a fiscally strong position.
Parkland will receive $1.8 million for the first half of fiscal year 2017, July 1 through December 2016. The funds may be used to cover MAP financial aid grants that students received for the spring 2016 semester.
Our college continues to offer the programs that students and community employers need, and it is our hope that the funding news will reassure potential students and their parents that Parkland will be here to help them meet their academic goals, graduate, and achieve career success.
The uncertainty of the state budget in the last year has almost certainly contributed to an enrollment decline, not only here at Parkland, but at many Illinois public colleges and universities. As we approach fall 2016 in an enrollment deficit, now is the time for all Parkland employees to spread the positive news:
- Encourage any potential students to register TODAY for best class selection.
- Reassure them that Parkland College is fiscally solid and will be here for them.
- Tell them there are scholarships and other financial aid options to help them pay tuition.
Parkland College, in its 50th year, remains strong and looks forward to a promising new academic year. Thanks to all of you for your ongoing hard work. Your dedication to Parkland and our students during these challenging times is most appreciated.
[Tom Ramage is president of Parkland College.]