South Suburban College
South Suburban College

SSC Partners with local "YouthBuild" Program to Offer Young Adults a Second Chance at Success


SOUTH HOLLAND, IL – South Suburban College is partnering with the Chicago Southland YouthBuild (CSYB) program to offer GED classes to local youth who are considered ""at-risk." The CSYB program recruits and trains young people ages 18–24 who are living in south Cook County communities including Harvey, Riverdale, Blue Island, Dixmoor, Dolton, Calumet Park, Robbins, and Chicago's 9th and 34th Wards. In this 9-month program, students work toward their GED while learning job skills by building affordable housing for low-income people. Strong emphasis is also placed on leadership development, community service and environmental literacy.

"We are proud to partner with the YouthBuild program to give our community's young adults a second chance to get the basic education and career skills to be successful," said Frank Zuccarelli, SSC chairman of the board. "This program fits perfectly with the mission of our institution, and we do hope to see many of the participants continue on with their higher education upon completion of their GED."

The core program objectives are:

  • To enable disadvantaged youth who are high school dropouts to obtain the education and employment skills necessary to achieve self-sufficiency,
  • To provide opportunities for meaningful work and service to community,
  • To foster the development of employment and leadership skills, and
  • To expand the supply of permanent affordable housing for low-income families.

In addition to SSC, key partners for the CSYB program include: Habitat for Humanity Chicago South Suburbs, Chicago Heights, IL; The Gloria Taylor Foundation, Harvey, IL; Bethlehem Temple CDC, Harvey, IL; The Chicago Wisdom Project, Chicago, IL; Teens Acting in Community, Riverdale, IL; and NeighborScapes, Homewood, IL. These organizations provide YouthBuild students with preparatory instruction for the attainment of a GED certificate and the Home Builders Institute certificate in Pre Apprenticeship Certificate Training (PACT). Students also receive extensive leadership development training, creative academics and mentoring.

In addition to GED preparation, SSC's Division of Community Education provides residents of College District 510 with a wide-range of opportunities for adults to build the basic skills required for success through the Adult Basic Education (ABE), General Education Development (GED) and English as a Second Language (ESL) programs. All of the Community Education programs are offered free of charge (Federal funds in the amount of $290,230 provides 33% of the support of these programs). SSC will celebrate Adult Education week September 13-17, 2010, the same week classes begin for Community Education programs.

For more information about SSC Community Education programs, please call (708) 596-2000, ext. 2385 or 2227. For more information, or to apply for the 2010 YouthBuild program year, please contact the CSYB office at (708) 339-8173.


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