March 13, 2012

Mayor Emanuel and Governor Quinn Announce New Transportation, Distribution and Logistics Center at Olive-Harvey College

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

CHICAGO -- Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Governor Pat Quinn joined City Colleges of Chicago (CCC) Chancellor Cheryl Hyman today to announce the construction of the City Colleges of Chicago Transportation, Distribution & Logistics (TDL) Center at Olive-Harvey College, which is made possible by $31.6 million in funding from the State of Illinois and $10.6 million from CCC.  The facility will be the first comprehensive TDL education center in the state, preparing students for in-demand careers in ground, air, and rail transport, multi-modal distribution and logistics as part of City Colleges’ College to Careers initiative. 

“With this funding, Governor Quinn is supporting our ‘College to Careers’ program that re-engineers, re-imagines, and revolutionizes our City Colleges in order to meet the demand of the high-growth sectors of the future,” said Mayor Emanuel.  “This shared investment reflects our shared determination to strengthen our economy together.”

The $42.2 million project will create nearly 300 construction jobs.  The 200,000 square foot building is expected to be LEED certified and include: a high-tech warehouse environment, laboratories, workshops, classrooms, and virtual reality simulation facilities.  The new building will replace almost 112,000 square feet of temporary classroom space adjacent from the main Olive-Harvey College building. 

“By investing in our community colleges, we can better prepare Illinois residents with the skills they need to compete for these high-technology jobs,” Governor Quinn said. ”We’ll put people to work building this new facility, and we’ll empower students with state-of-the-art tools and training they need to go out and get these good-paying, high-tech jobs.”

The project is administered by the Capital Development Board, which oversees state-funded, non-road construction projects. Construction is expected to start in Spring 2013 and be completed in Spring 2015.

“City Colleges’ main goal is to equip our students with credentials of economic value that prepare them to compete and win the jobs of today and tomorrow,” said Chancellor Cheryl Hyman. “The TDL industry is increasingly reliant on high-skill, technology-driven jobs, and this facility will embed technology into our training programs to prepare students to hit the ground running in this fast-growing field.”

The City Colleges’ College to Careers initiative brings industry experts and City Colleges together through the creation of industry training programs, the engagement of industry experts as teacher-practitioners in City Colleges' classrooms, and as a source of direct access to facilities for training purposes, internships and job interviews.  These industry experts will work closely with City Colleges’ faculty and the state’s design team to drive the exact programs and related facilities to provide the skills industry looks for.

Transportation, distribution, logistics at Olive-Harvey will grow to include: repair and maintenance of heavy equipment, expanded commercial drivers’ license, forklift, supply chain management including freight expediting, warehousing and logistics information technology, sheet metal technician, automotive technology, avionics tech, and applied engineering.  Careers in these fields can begin with starting salaries as high as $21/hour and serve as the gateway to further education and career advancement.  These programs will be offered as stackable credentials, allowing students to return over the course of their lifetime to gain marketable degrees without credit loss.

The College to Careers partnership initially focuses on two industries: transportation, distribution & logistics at Olive-Harvey College and healthcare at Malcolm X College, but will grow to include programs in other high-demand sectors over the next three years.  Mayor Emanuel and City Colleges recently announced a $479 million, five year capital plan which includes a new $251 million campus for Malcolm X College, including an Allied Health Academy.

City Colleges’ College to Careers partners in Transportation/Distribution/Logistics include: Coyote Logistics, UPS, Canadian National Railway, Union Pacific, AAR Corporation, BNSF, Schneider Finance Inc., and United Airlines.  Partners in healthcare include: Rush University Medical Center, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, University of Chicago Hospitals, Advocate Health Care, University of Illinois at Chicago, Jesse Brown VA, Walgreens, CVS, John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County, Baxter, and Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council.

Governor Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now! program includes $1.5 billion for higher education, including $788 million for public universities and $400 million for community colleges. The overall $30 billion program is expected to create 439,000 construction jobs.