MORE: Making Opportunities Real for Everyone in the Mississippi and Rock River Regions

Leadership Community

Building a culture for pathway implementation and postsecondary success.

The Sauk and Mississippi Valley Region stretches from Dixon, Illinois, to Clinton, Iowa. Through school, industry, and business partnerships, professionals collaborate to bring opportunities to students and employers. This initiative aims to build a culture for pathway implementation and postsecondary success as measured by degree completion, job placement, and students who return to the community for employment. Partners continue to support each other and expand opportunities for students exploring all career clusters. These opportunities are exemplified through dual credit, internships, business/professional skills training for high school students, manufacturing day/week tours and hands-on activities, career planning with employer support, and creating a pathway. The multitude of partners engaged in this initiative has allowed our rural region to provide exceptional opportunities for students.

Lead Intermediary Organization

Whiteside Area Career Center, Sauk Valley Community College, Morrison Tech, Sauk Valley Chamber of Commerce, ROE 47, and area school districts

Regional Focus

Northwest Illinois’ Mississippi and Rock River Regions

Areas of Expertise

  • Sharing responsibilities and commitment to the region
  • Career exploration curriculum development
  • Career pathways development
  • Employers in the classroom
  • Work-based learning experiences
  • Postsecondary partnerships

Prioritized Focus Areas

  • Specific focus on manufacturing, agriculture, health science, and education
  • Education pathway partnerships with Sauk Valley Community College, Northern Illinois University, and Western Illinois University
  • Career planning for all industry clusters
  • Streamlining relationships with partners in education, workforce and students

Key Successes

  • Xello is being utilized by schools in the MORE service area. Student user engagement has increased by 46% for middle school students and 56% for high school students.
  • SVCC and WACC continue coordinating initiatives for area high schools to maximize career pathways opportunities.
  • MORE promotes the Multi-craft Extended Internship Program (MEIP) at SVCC through partnerships with area manufacturers and high schools.
  • MORE is working with SVCC, WACC and area high schools to expand enrollment in health sciences courses, certifications, and degree programs. Pathways endorsement has begun in the Health Sciences.
  • Transitional English curriculum will be approved for portability in fall 2023
  • SVCC’s Impact program provides eligible students, who graduate within the Sauk district, the opportunity to earn tuition and fees for up to three years at SVCC, or until they earn their degree, whichever comes first.
  • Certificate of Employability Workshop; bringing education/business and students/employers together to discuss career pathways and critical essential skills.
  • Portability was obtained for all three transitional math pathways.
  • The MIE Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities program (CEO) is supported and run by WACC and the local business community.

2-Year Goals

  • Partner with families, community stakeholders, and educators to support college and career readiness opportunities.
  • Strategically align pathways systems to Illinois competencies to effectively serve students through multiple entry and exit points.
  • Identify and collaboratively address barriers to participation in pathway endorsement programs to increase opportunities for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Community Updates

New Greenhouse at SVCC

The new Sauk Valley Community College (SVCC) Greenhouse is operational and will be used as a learning lab in partnership with the University of Illinois

Virtual College and Career Readiness Summit

On February 9, 2024, Sauk Valley Community College, in collaboration with Regional Office of Education #47, will offer a virtual College & Career Readiness Summit.

TELA Summit

Over 100 participants across Illinois joined the 2nd annual virtual Transitional English Language Arts  (TELA) Summit hosted on December 1, 2023, by Sauk Valley Community

MORE Graduates Earn Endorsements

This school year, three students from Fulton High School and one from Morrison High School graduated with their College and Career Pathway Endorsement in the

MORE Community Update

Whiteside Area Career Center has expanded credentialing and dual credit for coursework taken at the Center and has increased student enrollment by over 100 students compared to 2018.

River Bend Adopts PaCE Framework

Through a collaborative process that included administrators, teachers and other stakeholders, River Bend Community Unit District #2, which is in the MORE Leadership Community, has adapted the PaCE Framework.