SWIC LogoMARYVILLE – The Illinois Department of Economic Opportunity announced a $7.5 million investment to construct a manufacturing training academy downstate, and State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) applauds the department’s decision to locate the new facility at Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville.

“The pandemic has highlighted the critical importance of manufacturing in our country,” Crowe said. “This investment in SWIC’s manufacturing program supports workforce development and puts our region on a path to equitable recovery.”

Expanding upon the school’s existing manufacturing training facilities, SWIC’s Belleville campus will soon be home to a new manufacturing education hub. The Advanced Manufacturing Center is expected to break ground later this year and begin welcoming students by fall 2022.

The expanded program will offer students a new precision machining pathway, as well as additional career training for roles in industrial electricity and welding manufacturing. Additionally, SWIC has plans to create a recruitment program to help ensure more women and students of color have access to educational and job training opportunities.

“This new Manufacturing Training Academy won’t just benefit the Metro East—it will foster equity in the entire manufacturing industry and ensure positive progress across the state,” Crowe said. “I’m thrilled to see more opportunities open up for local students of all backgrounds.”

Visit DCEO’s website for more information on the Manufacturing Training Academies programs.

Category: Press Releases

pexels pixabay 256541MARYVILLE– State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) applauds the 206 Metro East high school students who were named 2021-22 Illinois State Scholars by the Illinois Student Assistance Commission.

“To be named an Illinois State Scholar takes hard work and perseverance, and I am so proud of the Metro East students who earned the distinguished honor,” Crowe said. “With the support of their families, teachers and administrators, these students have excelled despite the many challenges they’ve faced over the last year.”

Illinois State Scholar winners rank in approximately the top 10% of the state’s high school seniors from 676 high schools in all 102 counties. Selection is based on a combination of standardized test scores and class rank or unweighted GPA at the end of the student’s junior year. ISAC works in conjunction with the students’ high school guidance counselors to determine the winners.

The 56th District’s 206 Scholars include students from nine area high schools: Alton High School, Civic Memorial High School, Collinsville High School, East Alton-Wood River Community High School, Edwardsville High School, Granite City Senior High School, Marquette High School, Metro East Lutheran High School and Roxana Senior High School.

State Scholars will receive a digital badge issued by ISAC that can be displayed on online profiles, exhibited on social media and shared with prospective colleges and employers.

“Teens face stiff competition when applying for college and financial assistance, but this award will give our students an advantage,” Crowe added. “The Illinois State Scholar recognition rewards students for their outstanding efforts by helping them attend and afford their dream school.”

More information about the State Scholar program can be found at ISAC’s website.

Category: Press Releases

51133086270 2fe0483ea8 cMARYVILLE – In honor of Work Zone Awareness Week, State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) and State Senator Christopher Belt (D-Centreville) are commending highway workers, law enforcement and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) for prioritizing safety in construction zones and encouraging motorists to stay alert.

“Millions of motorists depend on our state roadways for safe transportation every day. It’s important that drivers prioritize the well-being of the workers maintaining those roads,” Crowe said. “The brave individuals who endanger their lives to ensure safe roadway conditions deserve recognition during Illinois’ Work Zone Awareness Week.”

According to IDOT, Illinois averages 6,400 crashes in work zones each year, resulting in 1,700 injuries and 34 deaths annually.

Work Zone Awareness Week is highlighted in Illinois each spring. This year, the campaign takes place from April 26 through April 30.

“With St. Louis right across the river, the residents in my area heavily depend on safe and reliable bridges every single day,” Belt said. “I commend our roadway construction workers for the dangerous but essential work they do every day.”

More information is available on IDOT’s website.

Category: Press Releases

Initiative expands financial options to support apprenticeships, K-12 tuition

03162021CM0202SPRINGFIELD – To bring Illinois on par with neighboring states, State Senator Rachelle Crowe (D-Glen Carbon) has advanced a bipartisan initiative to allow families to use funds from qualified tuition plans to cover the cost of K-12 tuition and apprenticeship supplies.

“Many of our bordering states like Missouri, Iowa and Wisconsin consider K-12 tuition and apprenticeship costs eligible expenses under qualified tuition plans,” Crowe said. “This initiative builds on Illinois’ commitment to ensure our students have access to the best opportunities by helping families afford K-12 education and job training.”

Qualified tuition plans, also known as 529’s, are tax-advantaged savings plans sponsored by states, agencies or institutions to encourage families to save for future education costs.

These plans allow residents to open an investment account to save for future qualified higher education expenses, like tuition, mandatory fees, or room and board.

The proposed plan expands the list of expenses that can be covered using 529 funds.

Under Crowe’s legislation, families could use these funds to pay for enrollment at an elementary or secondary public, private, or religious school, as well as fees, books, supplies and equipment required for apprenticeship programs.

“By expanding qualified tuition plans, we can support working families as they explore education goals with their students,” Crowe said. “Illinois must be on par with our neighboring states in making this option available to families.”

Senate Bill 558 passed the Senate and now moves for further consideration in the House.

Category: Press Releases

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