Thursday, July 12, 2012

Lt. Governor Sheila Simon to Open Innovative Education Conference

College Changes Everything brings together national, state, and local education leaders to improve student success.

TINLEY PARK – Illinois Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon will address hundreds of state and local education leaders at the College Changes Everything conference on July 12th.  The conference, organized by Women Employed along with state and educational partners, will bring together more than 300 education and policy leaders to learn about effective ways to improve college access and completion rates.  Lt. Gov. Simon is working to increase the percentage of Illinois adults with college degrees to 60 percent by 2025. She will talk to the crowd about the most recent strategies and programs enacted in Illinois to help achieve that goal.

Completing a college degree is a vital step to success for many women.  It is one of the best, most reliable ways for a woman to lift herself and her family out of poverty. With a bachelor’s degree, a woman earns 78 percent more than a high school graduate. 

The College Changes Everything conference will focus on effective ways to increase college success, and will showcase resources that are available to colleges to help them increase college access and graduation rates. The conference will bring together statewide college and university leaders and administrators, high school educators, experts in increasing college access, guidance counselors, and policymakers.  Lumina Foundation President Jamie Merisotis, one of the foremost national leaders on college access and completion, will keynote the conference.

 “This is a great opportunity for educational leaders from across the state to collaborate, brainstorm, and come up with ideas for improving access and graduation rates at their own institutions,” said Meegan Dugan Bassett, WE’s Senior Policy Associate.

The event is organized by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission, Women Employed, the Illinois Lt. Governor’s Office, the Illinois Board of Higher Education, the Illinois Community College Board, the Illinois State Board of Education, the Illinois College Access Network, and the Federation of Illinois Independent Colleges and Universities.  It is sponsored by KnowHow2GoIllinois.

About Women Employed
Women Employed is a 39-year-old non-profit organization that promotes fair workplace practices, helps increase access to training and education, and provides women with innovative tools and information to move into careers paying family-supporting wages. For more information, visit, or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.