Going to college or earning a career certificate increases your chances of getting a good job. The average salary of a college graduate is almost double that of someone who does not go to college. The bottom line is that going to college means more money, more opportunities and a better life for your family. We have several opportunities for you – everything from scholarships to cash stipends, tutoring to mentoring. Learn about the resources available to help you.
|Level of education completed||Average earnings in 2017|
|Less than a high school diploma||$33,800|
|High school graduate, no college||$46,228|
|Some college, no degree||$51,324|
|Associate degree (occupational program)||$51,168|
|Associate degree (academic program)||$53,040|
|Doctoral degree (e.g., Ph.D.)||$123,084|
|Professional degree (e.g., M.D., J.D.)||$135,668|
In addition to higher earnings, unemployment rates tend to be lower as you get more education (i.e., it’s easier to find a job). Explore career options at StudentAid.gov/careersearch.
Federal Student Aid
An office of the U.S. Department of Education StudentAid.gov May 2018. Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Current Population Survey
Attend Your Community College for Free with One Million Degrees (OMD)
One Million Degrees accelerates community college students’ progress on career pathways to economic mobility. OMD provides scholars with holistic support including coaching, financial assistance, personal support and professional development. Click here to learn more about how OMD empowers scholars to take charge of their own success, and take a peek into the community you could be a part of!
FREE Tuition at the University of Illinois
Starting with the 2019 incoming class, the University of Illinois will cover tuition and fees for up to four years for all qualified in-state students.
- You’re an Illinois resident (parents listed on the FAFSA are also Illinois residents)
- Your family income is $61,000 or less
- Your family’s assets are $50,000 or less
- You’re admitted as a new freshman or transfer student
- You’re under the age of 24
Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC)
Do you have questions about college? About financial aid? Get answers from ISAC’s experts sent directly to your phone. ISACorps members are recent college graduates from across the state that can help you with the ins and outs of selecting and applying to college. Meet with your local ISACorps member for free one-on-one assistance. Click here to meet with a free college advisor.
Paying for College and Scholarship Information
Get Connected for College!
Looking for help with getting connected to the world wide web? Purchasing an affordable laptop? Comcast has programs that help residents with low-cost computers and affordable internet access at home.
Scholarship for Careers in Healthcare
This exciting scholarship opportunity allows you to gain the education required for a rewarding career in Community Health, Nursing, Health Information Administration, or Occupational Therapy
College Preparation Checklist
This checklist will tell you how to get ready for college as early as 1st grade – and tell you how the government will help you pay for it.
Illinois College2Career helps you find Illinois colleges that best fit your educational priorities and career goals.
UPS Chicagoland Regional College Program CRCP
UPS pays up to $25,000 in tuition for their employees. Click here to learn more.
CEDA provides Fall Semester Scholarships for IL Colleges.
Evanston Scholars serves ETHS sophomores who have the potential and commitment to go to college, but who do not have the resources to succeed on their own.
We are looking for high school sophomore students in Evanston who fit most of the following criteria:
- Academically ambitious, motivated, and committed as evidenced by a strong academic performance (over 2.7 GPA)
- Come from a low-income household
- Person of color
- First-generation college student
- Committed to their education and have a strong desire to complete college
The Gateways Scholarship Program will pay a portion of tuition for eligible professionals working in early care and education or school-age programs who want to earn college credit, Credentials, or degrees. The courses you take need to be in early childhood education (ECE) or child development (CD). You can be enrolled in an associate, bachelor’s, or master’s degree program or taking classes toward a certificate, endorsement, or Credential.
Who is eligible?
To be eligible to receive a Gateways Scholarship, you must:
- Care for children in an Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (IDCFS) licensed program or Illinois State Board of Education funded Preschool for All program.
- Employed by your current program for at least one year. (90 days if employed at an ExceleRate Bronze, Silver or Gold Circle of Quality program.)
- Work an average of 15 hours per week.
- Meet wage requirements.
- Be a citizen of the United States or a legal resident.
- Commit to future work in early care and education or school-age care.