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Local News

JJC officials propose aiding students of graduates

Officials also propose third-party management for Renaissance Center

Joliet Junior College officials have proposed to trustees having third-party management for the operation of the school's Renaissance Center in downtown Joliet, after an analysis and recommendations from consultants.
Joliet Junior College officials have proposed to trustees having third-party management for the operation of the school's Renaissance Center in downtown Joliet, after an analysis and recommendations from consultants.

JOLIET — Joliet Junior College officials are recommending starting a legacy program that would give financial assistance to students of JJC graduates.

Yolanda Isaacs, vice president of Student Development, proposed a recommendation to the Board of Trustees this week for the creation of a legacy program that would be cutting edge and a “trailblazing opportunity.”

“We would potentially be the first community college to implement a legacy program like this,” she said at Tuesday’s workshop meeting.

Under the proposal, the legacy program would award financial assistance to students who are the son, daughter, stepson, stepdaughter or legal dependent of a JJC graduate who earned an associate’s degree, she said.

Students also would have to be enrolled full time and be a JJC District 525 resident, which covers several counties, including Grundy and Will. 

The amount offered to the student would be up to $400 a semester for a maximum of three consecutive semesters, she said.

She said the goal of the program is to encourage students to invest in JJC and have the college, in turn, invest in students. 

“With a legacy program, there are some significant benefits; and given the state budget and issues with our state budget, I truly believe that more and more family members will need financial support,” Isaacs said.

If JJC were to implement the legacy program, it could run as a pilot program for the first year and cap the aid at 100 recipients, she said.

Renaissance Center

College officials also proposed having third-party management for the operation of the Renaissance Center, after an analysis and recommendations from consultants. 

“There is very little risk to the college, but the rewards would come back to the college,” said Amy Murphy, Corporate and Community Services director.

A past history of the operations of the Renaissance Center was given to trustees. 

Janice Reedus, Business and Auxiliary Services director, said college officials in 2013 were directed by trustees to review the center’s operations, which was done with hospitality consultants Bakergroup.

The financial performance and other aspect of the center’s operations were shown to be poor.

Murphy said the college worked with VenuWorks to come up with several business models for the center and that third-party management was shown as the best option.

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