New presidents for City Colleges of Chicago

June 9, 2011

(WBEZ/Jennifer Brandel)
Mayor Rahm Emmanuel and City Colleges of Chicago Chancellor Cheryl Hyman say they want to transform the current college system.

Most of the city colleges of Chicago will be getting new leadership. Mayor Rahm Emanuel endorsed recommendations for five new presidents of the seven city colleges.

In a press conference on Thursday, he said new presidents, a new board and a new plan to increase accountability in the system have to happen.

Mayor Emanuel pounded the table while saying, "You cannot continue with a seven percent graduation rate. You cannot continue with a system with a declining enrollment when everyone else during the recession was seeing dramatic increases."

The new presidents were picked from a pool of 140 candidates in a national search. The colleges board of trustees will vote on the leadership in a meeting next week.

The mayor also said he'd like to expand dual credit classes in Chicago high schools.  These classes allow high schoolers to earn community college credit in addition to high school credit. Emanuel said he hopes that will increase student focus and "get them on a track where they have a future in mind."