FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Loyola University Chicago Commits $25,000 toward
the Construction of a School-Based Health Center
in Rogers Park Elementary School
The Clinic Will Ensure Students Have Improved Access to
Health Care as Well as Offer Learning Opportunities
to the Loyola Community
CHICAGO, June 28, 2018—Loyola University Chicago has committed a $25,000 donation toward the construction of a SMART Student Health and Wellness Center at Chicago Public Schools’ (CPS) Gale Community Academy in Rogers Park. This significant one-time grant means that the school can commence construction of the new clinic and represents a key turning point in the relationship between the two schools.
Offering targeted medical and social-emotional support, the clinic will focus on academic outcomes and is completely integrated into the educational environment. Clinic staff will work closely with school faculty, staff, and administration to ensure they support the goals and needs of the students, functioning as an integral part of the whole school community.
At Sullivan High School, also in Rogers Park, a SMART clinic replaced its existing, failing school-based health clinic in 2013. Since then, the population of students who receive health care increased four-fold to 85-90 percent from the 15-20 percent usually seen by traditional models. Likewise, attendance increased remarkably: more than 90 percent of students attend school regularly, with average absenteeism dropping from 36 days per year to 18 days per year, and disciplinary referrals also plummeted.
Gale Community Academy Principal Augustine Emuwa encountered these considerable benefits first-hand during his time as an assistant principal at Sullivan and engaged the Ginn Group Consulting CEO Melanie Ginn, who developed the SMART model in collaboration with CVS Health, to launch another program at the academy. Since then, he has led the fundraising efforts in the community to match CVS’s grant.
“We have had every kind of fundraiser you can imagine,” Emuwa said. “The students, parents, faculty, staff, and community have really rallied behind the fundraising effort.”
Forty-ninth Ward Alderman Joe Moore has been an important advocate for CPS, forming the Committee on Rogers Park Schools in 2017, and he has put his full support behind this new effort.
“This has to happen in order to serve the basic health care needs of the under-served families in the 49th Ward whose children attend Gale,” Moore said. “Meeting these basic needs is essential to improved academic performance.”
Moore brought the initiative to the attention of Loyola administrators and requested the unprecedented cash donation. The University’s grant will enable clinic construction to launch this summer.
“Embodying our Jesuit, Catholic heritage, we are committed to addressing societal problems at both a global and local level,” said Loyola’s Acting Provost and Chief Academic Officer Margaret Faut Callahan, CRNA, PhD, FNAP, FAAN. “Loyola is happy to support our neighbors through this project that is bound to have a significant impact on the well-being of Rogers Park families and make subsequent improvements to education and access.”
Loyola has long enjoyed successful partnerships with CPS throughout the Edgewater and Rogers Park neighborhoods. In 2012, Loyola established a partnership with Nicholas Senn High School and helped launch its wall-to-wall International Baccalaureate programme. Since that time, the graduation rate has catapulted from 61 percent in 2013 to 90 percent in 2017 and its post-secondary enrollment has increased from 57 percent to 62 percent.
As the relationship with Gale Community Academy strengthens, it will also allow for expanded opportunities for Loyola’s students, including teacher preparation and nursing clinical experiences as well as other forms of engaged teaching and learning. Through Schools 2020, Loyola already supports several collaborative projects with Gale. One such project is in Loyola’s Center for Science and Math Education. With generous funding from the Polk Bros. Foundation, the center ensures teachers at Gale and other neighborhood schools are professionally trained to implement high-quality science instruction that is aligned with Illinois’ Next Generation Science Standards.
“A school-based clinic will assist Principal Emuwa and his team at Gale to continue to build capacity to deliver a community-based model of education for the students they serve in Rogers Park,” said Ann Marie Ryan, PhD, associate professor of education. “We are honored to be a part of this important work.”
About Loyola University Chicago
Founded in 1870, Loyola University Chicago is one of the nation’s largest Jesuit, Catholic universities, with more than 16,600 students. Nearly 11,500 undergraduates call Loyola home. The University has four campuses: three in the greater Chicago area and one in Rome, Italy, as well as course locations in Saigon-Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; Vernon Hills, Illinois (Cuneo Mansion and Gardens); and a Retreat and Ecology Campus in Woodstock, Illinois. The University features 13 schools, colleges, and institutes, including the Quinlan School of Business, Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing, Stritch School of Medicine, College of Arts and Sciences, School of Communication, School of Continuing and Professional Studies, School of Education, School of Law, School of Social Work, Graduate School, Institute of Pastoral Studies, Institute of Environmental Sustainability, and Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago. Ranked a top national university by U.S. News & World Report, Loyola is also among a select group of universities recognized for community service and engagement by prestigious national organizations like the Carnegie Foundation and the Corporation for National and Community Service. To learn more about Loyola, visit LUC.edu, “like” us at Facebook.com/LoyolaChicago, or follow us on Twitter via @LoyolaChicago or @LoyolaNewsroom.