CICERO – Governor Pat Quinn today was joined by school and local officials to announce a $4.5 million investment from his Illinois Jobs Now! program to build a 10-classroom addition at Morton College. The college is the largest, two-year public Hispanic-serving Institution east of the Mississippi River, and the new addition will help them accommodate a steadily increasing enrollment that has reached the capacity of the Cicero campus. Today’s announcement is part of Governor Quinn’s agenda to ensure that everyone has the opportunity for a high-quality education, while creating jobs and driving Illinois’ economy forward.
“This investment will help Morton College meet the needs of its current and future student body so graduates can receive a good education and make a difference in the world,” Governor Quinn said. “Building these classrooms will create jobs and support local economic growth, while improving the educational experience at Morton College.”
The Morton College grant totals $4,549,500 and will be used to construct a 13,250-square-foot addition to the existing Building C on campus. The two-story addition would add ten new classrooms that will accommodate general education courses and allow the college to expand its successful career and technical education programs.
“We are extremely thankful to Governor Quinn and to our state and local legislators for this wonderful gift,” Morton College President Dana Grove said. “Since no new construction has occurred on this campus since it was first built in the 1970s, this classroom addition will become a symbol on an exciting new path that Morton College plans to chart in the future.”
The current Morton College campus opened in 1975. Although enrollment has increased steadily since then, no new facilities have been built. In May 2009, Morton College was selected to be part of the Achieving the Dream Initiative, a national effort to help community college students succeed, particularly minority and low-income students. This is done through using data to identify areas of need in student achievement and implementing strategies to close those gaps.
"Investing in education and creating jobs is essential to improving our communities in the region,” State Senator Martin Sandoval (D-Cicero) said. “I applaud Governor Quinn for his leadership.”
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.