Let's ASPIRE to Improve Dev Ed in Illinois Together!
Do you work for a college that is passionate about improving equity and student success? Are you involved in efforts to improve developmental education outcomes for low-income students and students of color? Women Employed will soon launch The Accelerating Student Progress and Increasing Racial Equity (ASPIRE) Project!

Through the ASPIRE project, WE will partner with ten Illinois community colleges to develop and test innovative strategies to determine college readiness, place more students directly into credit-bearing courses, and support their academic progress!

To highlight your own efforts or learn more about the ASPIRE Project reach out to Chris Warden at cwarden@womenemployed.org or register to attend Women Employed's Adult College Success Council meeting at 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 29th!

College Changes Everything!
Join colleagues and friends working on Fostering Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging for the Success of All Learners at the annual College Changes Everything (CCE) Conference the week of July 12, 2021.

The pandemic has elevated existing inequities among historically underrepresented populations—which is why we must take steps now to examine and address the short and long-term outcomes of our policies, programs and structures! Save the date and learn more here!

Come Learn about our Digitized Career Foundations!
Women Employed recently digitized the Career Foundations curriculum to meet the needs of organizations that are engaging students remotely. The curriculum now features built-in flexibility to support different types of classrooms: in-person, hybrid, or remote education. Whether your organization provides workforce or adult education services, the range of career pathways exploration and goal-setting activities that Career Foundations provides is critical for supporting your participants and can help you meet your programmatic benchmarks!

Register here to join us for a short session via Zoom to learn more about the digitized curriculum on Tuesday May 18th from 12:00-1:00pm CT!

What's New With Ability to Benefit in Illinois?
Exciting new opportunities for students to qualify for Ability to Benefit (ATB) are being discussed in Illinois. Watch for the ATB presentation by Kathy Oleson-Tracey, ICCB Senior Director for Adult Education and Literacy, and Angela Gerberding, ICCB Associate Director for Integrated Career Programs, at the virtual WIOA Summit later this month to learn more.

Provide Comments on the IBHE Strategic Plan
IBHE is soon to release a draft Strategic Plan. IBHE has sought public comment throughout their planning process and is providing additional opportunities for your voice to be heard. Watch the IBHE website for the draft to be posted; go here to provide written comments; and watch here for town hall meeting dates the week of April 26th.

Join Us at the Adult College Success Council!
Women Employed's President and CEO, Cherita Ellens, will preview our new strategic plan and make time for you to share your reactions and ask questions. We'll also hear from WE's Policy Director, Chris Warden, who will present updates on the work we've been doing to advance racial equity in higher education!

Let's make the next four years count!

Mark your calendar for one of Illinois' premier spring events, where we'll showcase how Women Employed plans to make the next four years count! We'll also honor and celebrate leaders, such as keynote speaker Congresswoman Lauren Underwood, the Illinois Black Caucus, and others who have dedicated their lives to championing economic equity and are unwavering in their commitment to ensuring fundamental and system change at all level. Click here to register for The Working Lunch!

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