COD partners with community in culture, arts and business

I knew about College of DuPage's excellence long before I began working here.

Residing in Community College District 502, I used the college's resources and library while working on my Ph.D. in public administration, public policy and government finance.

When it came time for all three of my children to attend college, I challenged each one to give me good reasons why they should enroll at another institution besides COD.

As my kids closely examined what College of DuPage had to offer, they all chose to begin their undergraduate education at COD.

In celebration of Community College Month in April, I want people to know that College of DuPage is here for you.

We offer an incredible array of resources to so many people. Our tuition is affordable.

The locations of our main campus in Glen Ellyn and four centers in Addison, Carol Stream, Naperville and Westmont make us a convenient option for higher education. Our flexible class offerings and formats fit into your schedule.

Moreover, the high quality of instruction, accessibility of faculty and smaller class sizes provide for a more personalized experience.

Community colleges also respond to the needs of their residents. While education continues to evolve as the world moves beyond the pandemic, I see more students looking for immediate training in emerging careers and quicker paths to job entry.

With this in mind, College of DuPage continues to diversify its programming. For example, our new certificate options include "Data Analytics" and the "Internet of Things," two rapidly growing fields. These are "short-term certificates," two of more than 70 offerings at COD that consist of anywhere from one to seven courses.

Additionally, we designed many of these certificates to be stackable, meaning they can be accumulated for further training and credentials.

Project Hire-Ed, the college's apprenticeship program, continues to expand its offerings. By partnering with local companies, we provide the workforce with a pipeline of trained employees.

All of this is over and above our provision of a curriculum that helps students receive the first two years of college before they transfer to continue their education or begin their careers.

Athletics? College of DuPage teams won five national championships in 2022.

The arts? College of DuPage is a cultural force in the community. For example, the Cleve Carney Museum of Art, located in the college's McAninch Arts Center, successfully presented the "Frida Kahlo: Timeless" exhibit in 2021, attracting visitors from around the globe. The Andy Warhol exhibition this summer seeks to do the same.

The Community Engagement staff facilitates partnerships with community organizations that result in a positive impact, shared resources and opportunities for service for both students and staff.

I could go on about the many facets of COD.

Much as I challenged my children when they were deciding upon a college, I challenge everyone in our community to consider College of DuPage first.

As college selection decisions continue to be made for the next academic year, I encourage you to visit COD.

We are a college for the community and, therefore, your college. Take advantage of everything we can do for you.

• Dr. Brian Caputo is the president of the College of DuPage.

Brian Caputo
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