February 07, 2023

Duckworth, Durbin Meet with Illinois Higher Education Leaders


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with the leadership and members of the Illinois Community College Trustees Association (ICCTA), which represents 48 community colleges across Illinois and the Federation of Independent Illinois Colleges and Universities (FIICU), which represents 56 private nonprofit colleges across Illinois. During their meetings, the Senators spoke about the rising cost of higher education and improving the accessibility of higher education by doubling the maximum Pell Grant award to $13,790, as well as fortifying federal employment and training programs at Illinois colleges. Duckworth and Durbin also discussed solutions to the shortage of health care professionals across the country, with an estimated shortage of 15,000 nurses in Illinois expected by 2025. 

“I had productive conversations with Senator Durbin and several leaders from Illinois colleges and universities about the importance of uplifting these institutions and their students,” said Duckworth. “I’ll continue working with Senator Durbin to help ensure that higher education is an attainable, affordable opportunity for all students—especially students of color, student parents, women and Veterans.”

“One of the greatest gifts we can give the next generation is an education.  But for many Americans, financial constraints are a barrier to earning a college degree or a professional certification,” said Durbin. “Today I had productive conversations with both FIICU and ICCTA about how we can make education more accessible by strengthening federal programs that help reduce costs for students and lead to high-quality student outcomes and jobs.”

Photos of the meeting with ICCTA are available here.