Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIU) is partnering with City Colleges of Chicago (CCC) to better support students and increase access to higher learning. Saluki Step Ahead gives City Colleges of Chicago graduates who earn an associate degree automatic admission to SIU’s online accounting, business and administration, criminology and criminal justice, psychology, health care management and radiologic sciences programs.

Students in the program pay the community college rate for their first two years. In the third and fourth years, they receive an annual $4,000 scholarship. The goal is to allow students to earn their degrees for $25,000 or less. Students must maintain a 2.0 GPA to enter the program and remain eligible. City Colleges is the 11th participating institution in Saluki Step Ahead.

“We are excited to have City Colleges of Chicago join Saluki Step Ahead and bring the SIU Carbondale experience to place-bound students,” Chancellor Austin A. Lane said. “This agreement, along with other partnerships with City Colleges, will provide more options for students, an important part of our strategic plan, Imagine 2030.”

“City Colleges of Chicago strives for equity and inclusion. With this newest agreement, we are removing obstacles and providing City Colleges students with a clear pathway to a bachelor’s degree,” said Juan Salgado, Chancellor of City Colleges of Chicago.

City Colleges of Chicago is a system of seven community colleges and five satellite sites that provide learning opportunities for residents of the Chicago area. Programs range from two-year associate degrees to several weeks-long occupational certificates, free courses for the GED and free English as a second language (ESL) courses. City Colleges of Chicago’s vision is to be recognized as the city’s most accessible higher education engine of socioeconomic mobility and racial equity—empowering all Chicagoans to take part in building a stronger and more just city.

Southern Illinois University Carbondale is a doctoral research university, with several colleges, a School of Law and a School of Medicine. With 200-plus majors, minors and specializations, the university offers unique opportunities, including undergraduate research often reserved for graduate students elsewhere, and it is committed to access and student success. The beautiful campus includes a lake, a forest, university-owned farms and world-class facilities.