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|FIRST ON WGIL: Local College Program Celebrates Midwest Region
|FIRST REPORTED 3:00pm 10/9/09 A time of remarkable opportunity in the midwest is just one of the reasons behind an area college launching a new initiative with a focus on economic development in the state and throughout the midwest.
Monmouth College began their midwest studies program Friday with a luncheon and a forum featuring a number of speakers on the importance of the midwest to the rest of the county.
Monmouth College President Mauri Ditzler shared his excitement of the start of the program by speaking at the luncheon where he said the economy in western Illinois needs help and he's confident the college can be a catalyst for innovation and change.
Ditzler told the group part of the problem, which results in what he called a 'brain drain' on the midwest, is the belief that students need to leave the area to be successful, when they can be successful in their own back yard.
"They can study there, do well, and get a ticket out of town, you've all heard that. Your college degree will be a ticket out of town. You can get out of this area which seems to be collapsing and go somplace interesting in the world. But I think it rubs many of us the wrong way when the prize is to get out of town. There are interesting places you might want to go and study but the town shouldn't be something that one wants to flee."
Ditzler says he wants the college to inspire students to see the midwest with new eyes, appreciate its history, achievements and potential and embrace the challenge to help renew it.
The college isn't making sweeping changes to its curriculum, Ditzler says, but rather the college is drawing public attention to the work already underway.
(Monmouth College President Mauri Ditzler speaks about the beginning of the Midwest Studies program at the school Friday.)
(WGIL News Story and Photo by Dominic Fortini.)
|10 09 09 by Newsroom
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