ROCK ISLAND – Governor Pat Quinn today announced $3.1 million in grants to Augustana College in Rock Island, Knox College in Galesburg and Monmouth College. The grants are part of $90 million set aside this fiscal year in the Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program to address the critical needs of the state’s private colleges and universities. Today’s announcement is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to improve higher education in Illinois while creating thousands of construction jobs.
“Augustana, Knox and Monmouth Colleges are educational jewels in northwestern Illinois, and these investments will help the schools stay competitive with other small colleges and continue to produce well-prepared graduates,” Governor Quinn said. “We are pleased to help these institutions address their needs while creating jobs and moving our economy forward.”
The Augustana College grant totals $1,329,319, and supports the interior and exterior renovation of Old Main and the construction of the new Center for Student Life.
“Augustana students are future leaders of our state, and we are grateful for this partnership with the State of Illinois in helping make possible the renovation of Old Main, a 125-year-old landmark that represents the best of traditional, liberal-arts education, and construction of an innovative new Center for Student Life,” Augustana President Steve Bahls said. “The two structures symbolize our efforts to educate tomorrow’s leaders. Thanks to public-private partnership both buildings will play significant roles in educating students starting this fall and for years to come.”
Knox College will receive a $931,932 grant to preserve and modernize historic Old Main, install state-of-the-art facilities in the Center for Fine Arts, and continue the transformation of Knox’s student union.
"Knox College is dedicated to providing our students with a 21st-century educational experience on a historic college campus,” Knox President Teresa Amott said. "We are proud to help drive economic growth in West-Central Illinois. More than 80 percent of Knox’s construction, renovation and other capital projects are completed by area contractors and workers."
Monmouth College is getting a $929,966 grant to assist with several campus building projects, including the new Center for Science and Business.
“Monmouth College has recently invested more than $40 million in infrastructure projects designed to enhance its academic and student life programs, including our new Center for Science and Business,” Monmouth President Mauri Ditzler said. “The Illinois Jobs Now! grant has been a boon not only to the college but will create many jobs for a number of construction companies and suppliers in the area.”
So far under Governor Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program, private universities have received $200 million to address their capital needs.
Governor Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Now! program is supporting more than 439,000 jobs over six years. Illinois Jobs Now! is the largest capital construction program in Illinois history, and is one of the largest capital construction programs in the nation.