Computer Systems Institute pledges to provide scholarships to Career Online High School to combat the dropout and jobless rates in Illinois by increasing education levels. CSI has made the online program available in campus-based learning labs at three of its campuses.
Illinois-based Computer Systems Institute (CSI) today announced that it has launched a first-of-its kind scholarship-matching program as part of Career Online High School’s (COHS) Commitment to Action through the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). CSI launched the high school program on three of its four campuses in January of this year and saw enrollment numbers spike immediately. “We went from zero to 46 enrolled students in less than 2 months,” said Dawn Bravo, CSI’s Vice President of Operations. “We decided to join the Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action when we realized how in-demand this program became in the first month we launched it at each campus location.”
COHS is part of Smart Horizons Career Online Education (SHCOE), the world’s first private accredited online school district. The school was established in 2012 through a partnership between SHCOE and Cengage Learning’s ed2go, the nation’s leader in online training solutions. COHS offers a SACS-accredited high school diploma and credentialed career certificate in a single online program.
In 2013, SHCOE and ed2go launched a Commitment to Action scholarship-matching program through the Clinton Global Initiative, which was founded in 2005 by former President Bill Clinton to bring together leaders in various sectors to commit to take action regarding the world’s most pressing challenges. SHCOE and ed2go’s Commitment to Action was formed to address the nation’s dropout crisis by engaging private and non-profit entities in a scholarship-matching program benefitting high school dropouts.
According to Bravo, CSI will provide 25 scholarships to be matched by the 25 provided by SHCOE/ed2go. “This is an important number for us because 2014 is our 25th year as a school, and the 25 scholarships will honor this milestone,” she said.
COHS students complete their coursework in supervised learning labs on the three CSI campuses. “We have facilitators at all three schools,” Bravo said. “Students receive 16 hours of supervised instruction per week on campus. Getting real-time, in-person assistance helps build the students’ confidence while they complete their education online. We also believe having peers around to celebrate successes along the way is very important for our overall retention effort.”
Bravo said approximately 10 percent of the potential students who contact CSI each year do not have a high school diploma, which is a requirement to enter CSI’s career training certification programs. “Any obstacle that keeps someone from getting the career training they need to become employed needs to be removed,” she said. “COHS helps us remove an obstacle for students who had previously given up on their education.”
One feature of COHS that made it attractive to CSI was the program’s flexibility in recognizing previously earned high school credit. “Many students dropped out in their junior or senior years of high school, yet the GED forced them into an all-or-nothing situation by not acknowledging the credits they already completed,” Bravo said. “With COHS, students only take the courses they never earned credit for.”
Bravo says CSI is dedicated to doing its part to address the problem of unemployment in Illinois. “There are more available jobs in this state than people on unemployment, yet those jobs go unfilled. We need to help more students meet the gatekeeper requirement of high school graduation so that they can continue on to skilled employment and become successful citizens who work and produce a better economy in Illinois.”
About Computer Systems Institute
The career training certification programs at Computer Systems Institute create opportunities in some of the fastest growing career fields. Areas of instruction include network technology, healthcare, business and programs for international students. CSI’s faculty is focused on student success, helping students from Chicago and the greater Chicago area enhance their skills and move to exciting certification careers. For more information, visit http://www.csinow.edu or call 1-800-451-5155.
About the Clinton Global Initiative
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), an initiative of Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 150 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date CGI members have made more than 2,500 commitments, which are already improving the lives of more than 430 million people in over 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $87.9 billion.
CGI also convenes CGI America, a meeting focused on collaborative solutions to economic recovery in the United States, and CGI University (CGI U), which brings together undergraduate and graduate students to address pressing challenges in their community or around the world, and, this year, CGI Latin America, which will bring together Latin American leaders to identify, harness, and strengthen ways to improve the livelihoods of people in Latin America and around the world. For more information, visit clintonglobalinitiative.org and follow us on Twitter@ClintonGlobal and Facebook at facebook.com/clintonglobalinitiative.
About Cengage Learning and ed2go
Cengage Learning is a leading educational content, software and services company for the academic, professional and library markets worldwide. ed2go, part of Cengage Learning, is the largest provider of turnkey online training and education solutions serving the adult education, career, and corporate training markets. With over 2,000 colleges, universities, community based organizations and other training providers, ed2go has served more than 2.5 million students. ed2go’s ever-growing catalog of Online Courses and Career Training Programs makes it simple for students to enrich their lives or reach professional goals in a supportive and engaging environment. ed2go also can help educational institutions jump-start their online education programs or augment existing distance learning options. For more information visit www.cengage.com or www.ed2go.com.