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Ford Center for the Fine Arts

College 4 Kids Returns in 2024

Knox’s College 4 Kids is making a triumphant return to campus for the first time since 2019, bringing joy and enrichment to the Galesburg community. The program will run from July 8 to July 19, 2024, on weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Registration ends on June 7. You can sign up today by clicking here. 

With anticipation building in 2023 for the return of the program, Assistant Professor of Educational Studies and Director of Teacher Education Mary Lyons, who now serves as the director for the program, worked with Knox and Galesburg community members to rebuild the roster of instructors.

This year’s program will offer 60 courses across various disciplines, including 23 art offerings, 18 humanities/social sciences, and 19 math and science courses. 

Lyons worked alongside previous instructors for feedback on how the program could be improved and gathered institutional knowledge on how the program was previously operated. This collaborative approach has already proven fruitful, with many expressing excitement about returning to teach. 

I’ve heard from many teachers that they look forward to College 4 Kids. They say it motivates and energizes their love for teaching,” Lyons said.  

Eight Knox students will serve the program as teaching fellows, guiding students around campus. These fellows will assist with processing course data and interests through pre- and post-surveys. Lyons hopes to include local high school students as fellows in the future, helping them feel a sense of belonging at Knox.

Galesburg CUSD #205 awarded 168 scholarships to attending students to pay for the cost of the program fee in full. As a former attending student of the program and Knox alumnus, Assistant Superintendent of Galesburg CUSD #205 Mindy Ritchie ’99 expressed excitement for the program's return. She believes College 4 Kids gives young students a gateway onto Knox’s campus, a social experience that she finds valuable.

“It provides talented and dynamic educators in the community to teach about topics that students might not be exposed to in regular schooling. It's the definition of enrichment; it's experiential,” she added. 

The successful relaunch of College 4 Kids has been made possible thanks to the generous support of many local partners like Galesburg CUSD #205, including:

  • F&M Bank
  • Jay and Mary Lyons
  • Gale Credit Union
  • John's Plumbing Heating Cooling LLC
  • Bayer Family Community Advancement Fund via Galesburg Community Foundation
  • Assured Partners
  • Jim Purlee (Purlee Farms)

Lyons is proud of the work that has gone into reintroducing the program to the community. She is hopeful for a successful turnout. "I think there are going to be tons of kids on this campus beaming from ear to ear, deeply engaged in meaningful, enriching learning experiences," she said.

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Printed on Sunday, June 16, 2024