Hope Chicago expands college partnership offerings, adding six new Illinois post-secondary institutions

Hope Chicago on Thursday announced the expansion of its college and university partner network with the addition of Dominican University in River Forest, Elmhurst University, Lake Forest College, Lewis University in Romeoville, Roosevelt University in Chicago and Schaumburg, and Trinity Christian College in Palos Heights.

The two-generation economic mobility program offers debt-free college and workforce opportunities to 4,000 Chicago Public School graduates and their parents.

Hope Scholars can attend partner institutions debt-free, and through these partnerships, students receive access to non-financial supports key in helping students succeed. The collaboration expands higher education access for residents in some of Chicago’s most systemically disinvested neighborhoods.

As Hope Chicago partners, each institution will provide dedicated staff members on-campus to support attending Hope Scholars — helping them navigate the collegiate environment, encouraging placement in campus programs, and connecting them to academic, financial, and career advising.

“Access to quality post-secondary education is not just a privilege, it’s a fundamental right that can transform the trajectory of low-income families and disadvantaged communities in Illinois,” said Janice Jackson, Hope Chicago CEO. “For South and West Side Chicago Public School students, pursuing higher education isn't merely about acquiring a degree; it's about unlocking doors to opportunity and offering them a stake in a more prosperous and equitable future of our city and state.”

With this expansion, Hope Chicago now is supported by a network of 29 Illinois-based higher education institutions offering post-secondary and workforce options for its scholars.

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