Equity at Kish

We are committed to a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, focused on respect and fairness, in all aspects of the College experience.


Kishwaukee College’s values of equity and support are indicative of our commitment to ensuring all learners know they are welcomed and valued members of the Kish community. We believe everyone deserves an affordable, quality education, and any barriers or completion gaps must be addressed. For the College’s efforts, Kish was recognized with the 2022 Equity and Diversity Award by the Illinois Community College Trustees Association.

In the spring of 2019, Kish joined the Illinois Equity in Attainment Initiative (ILEA), the signature initiative of the Partnership for College Completion (PCC). Kish committed along with 27 other colleges and universities to one goal — eliminating the achievement gap for students of color and low-income students.

As part of joining the ILEA, the College created an equity statement to reflect its goals and commitment to all students. In 2022, the statement was updated as part of Kish's new Strategic Plan. The statement reads: 

Kishwaukee College is committed to a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, focused on respect and fairness, in all aspects of the College experience.

When joining the PCC, Kish broke down achievement data and realized there was work to do.

At the time, State of Illinois data showed only 13.4% of African-American students completed their program. Of Latinx students, only 21.7% completed. Comparatively, white students in Illinois completed at a rate of 42.3%. Furthermore, 36.6% of students not receiving Pell grants completed, but only 24.8% of Pell grant recipients completed.

Kish’s data shows a similar story:

Student outcomes graph


Additional data showed that while Kish’s overall graduation rate increased from Fall 2011 to Fall 2015, a disparity existed between African-American and Latinx students and their white peers.

Grade rate chart






The 2019-2020 academic year saw the implementation of new strategies to move us toward the goal of closing achievement gaps.

Equity in higher education ensures all learners have what they need to complete their program. For some, financial assistance is needed. For others, it’s fulfilling basic needs like food or transportation support. Whatever the barrier, Kish has a host of resources to help students facing obstacles to completion. These include:

Kishwaukee College serves all learners and continues the great work to reduce barriers and to close the gap. We continue to execute our Equity Plan and implement the best strategies to support all students who choose Kish. You can find more of our current data and plans in the following:

Equity Quarterly Reports

Summary of Equity Activities (6/15/2022)

members of Kish’s PCC team

Dr. Laurie Borowicz, President
Dr. Joanne Kantner, Chief Academic Officer
Dr. Michelle Rothmeyer, Vice President of Student Services
Pernevlon Ellis, Associate Dean
Matthew Crull, Director of Research and Data Management
Dariana Lee, Director of Student Success
Graciela Horta, Coordinator-Student Outreach
Dominica Blalock, Assistant Professor
Joseph Przybyla, Assistant Professor

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