Students looking at books at the CCICS library

Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Northeastern Illinois University’s Jacob H. Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies (CCICS) has announced a new partnership with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. College Preparatory (King College Prep), which will allow students from both schools to complete Biology 100 at the University's South Side location beginning in Spring 2021.

Biology 100 lectures will be held at Northeastern’s historical CCICS location and students will perform their lab experiments at King College Prep, one of Chicago’s selective enrollment magnet high schools.

“King College Prep has state-of-the-art science labs that have not been utilized in over three years,” said Northeastern’s Assistant Director of Title III ÉXITO STEM Syreeta Brown. “Through this partnership, Northeastern’s faculty and staff have the opportunity to set up King’s labs for hands-on biology education in the spring.” 

Courses will be held from 1-3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning Jan. 18, 2022. The class will be taught by Professor Angela Nugent

“This partnership not only benefits NEIU students who reside on the South Side by giving them a familiar and close place to take a biology class in a new laboratory, but it also gives the students at King College Prep the opportunity to earn college credit before they graduate,” Brown said. “In this particular dual enrollment program, King College Prep students will spend time at CCICS with the NEIU students enrolled in the course for the lecture component. It’s a reciprocal relationship.” 

A similar program was held at El Centro in partnership with Roberto Clemente High School in Summer 2021, and was also taught by Nugent. Interested students are encouraged to connect with their academic advisor for more information and to register as spaces are limited. NEIU students who wish to participate in the course also need to undergo a criminal background check, per Chicago Public Schools. 

Assistant Director of CCICS Akua Cason developed a relationship with the administration at King College Prep, and through a Title III grant acquired by Project Director of Title III HSI STEM Grants Brittany Pines, Northeastern is also able to facilitate the construction of multiple labs at Northeastern in partnership with Triton College to expand science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) opportunities for students throughout the Chicago area.

“We really wanted to engage with King College Prep to see how CCICS could become more involved with their school community,” Cason said. “Through this partnership, we are hopeful that more students will become engaged in STEM and want to pursue postsecondary education in STEM fields.”