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

Recent Updates

December 2018 — In the MORE communities, representatives from area employers, higher education, and K-12 schools are meeting and creating a model/template for high school endorsements in agriculture, manufacturing, and education.  The education work recently brought together leaders from Western Illinois University (WIU), Northern Illinois University (NIU), Sauk Valley Community College, Whiteside Area Career Center, and area school district to meet and discuss how K-12, Sauk, WIU, and NIU can support students who choose to enter the education field.

The MORE Communities have also been planning a Robotics Team Challenge.  Area manufacturers, schools, Morrison Institute of Technology and Sauk Valley Community College are beginning to plan an area robotics competition in the Sauk Valley Region.  The goal of the competition is to provide an avenue to bring together employers, higher education and students for a day of learning, engagement and competitions.  The MORE team believes that employers can gain valuable access to potential employees, and that post-secondary institutions can market their programs of study to students and provide the students with a competition that engages their interests.

September 2018 — Through a collaborative process that included administrators, teachers and other stakeholders, River Bend Community Unit District #2, which is in the MORE (Making Opportunities Real for Everyone in the Mississippi and Rock River Regions) Leadership Community has adapted the PaCE Framework.  Darryl Hogue, the Superintendent for the district, said he is thrilled to have this tool to support students as they progress from K-12th grade.

Find the adapted Framework here.

June 2018 — Local Manufacturer Presents Internship Opportunities at Area High School

Fulton High School recently invited Timkin Drives, a local manufacturer to meet with graduating seniors to present the Timkin/Sauk Multicraft Intern opportunity as part of the region’s Multicraft Extended Internship Program.

Timkin shared the possibilities that exist if students commit to the internship that allows them to go to Sauk Valley Community College two days a week as a multicraft interns and work three days a week. Students complete the internship with a two-year multicraft certificate. Fulton High School is part of the MORE team and helps connect local manufacturers to graduating seniors.

To support the internship program, Whiteside Area Career Center (WACC) and Sauk Valley Community College have purchased multiple pieces of equipment this year, including two Haas mini mills, two Haas lathes, and six new CNC simulators. All of this equipment is housed at the WACC manufacturing technology center and has been purchased in response to workforce demands. Night courses are now offered at the facility to further engage industry and the community in workforce development.

Watch “Humans of Sauk Valley,” a video about MORE’s efforts that debuted in April 2018.


Community/Region of Focus

Whiteside Area Career Center, 18 high schools

Prioritized STEM Industry Clusters

  • Specific focus on manufacturing, agriculture, health science, and construction
  • Initial project allows for application across all industry clusters

Key Activities for Upcoming School Year

  • Career Cruising Inspire is being purchased through WACC.
  • Area communities will be supported through partnerships formed with MOR.
  • SVCC and WACC will begin hosting training for area high schools to maximize opportunities.
  • MOR is promoting the Multi-craft Extended Internship Program at SVCC through partnerships with area manufacturers and high schools.
  • MOR is promoting Morrison Tech’s pre-engineering dual credit program that allows high school students to earn credit toward an engineering degree.
  • MOR is working with SVCC, NIU, WACC and area hospitals to expand enrollment in health science courses, certifications and degree programs.
  • MOR will also be promoting and helping schools grow their school-business partnership programs through Career Cruising Inspire and business portfolios that highlight networking opportunities.