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Metallica helps change the lives of 80 College of Lake County students  

by Public Relations and Marketing | Published Feb 19, 2021

Yes, that Metallica. Through the heavy metal band’s All Within My Hands Foundation, College of Lake County (CLC) received a second round of funding for the Metallica Scholars Initiative (MSI). CLC matched their $50,000 grant to provide $100,000 in funding, plus an unexpected additional $25,000, to help more than 80 CLC students pursue a life-change through career and technical education (CTE), including U.S. Navy veteran Angel Rosales of Beach Park.

Angel Rosales with his family“I was inspired by the educational success of our two boys,” said Rosales. “I wanted to pursue higher-ed but after taking out hundreds of thousands of dollars for my sons’ educations, an additional loan was a worry. The Metallica Scholars Initiative choosing me is truly a great blessing and a huge financial relief.”

The MSI did more than help recipients like Rosales cover tuition, it also provided assistance for transportation, books, school supplies and other CLC wrap-around services to increase student completion rates. This all contributed towards the foundation’s goal to enhance CTE programs, such as the 11 included at CLC, while boosting the number of high-skilled workers in the manufacturing and transportation sectors and having a positive impact on those individual lives.

Photo: Angel Rosales with his family.

“The college’s strategic plan has identified the expansion and advancement of hands-on CTE programing as a top priority for our community over the next five years,” said CLC VP of Education and Chief Academic Officer Dr. Sonya Williams. “The MSI created conversations in our community and helped to further expose the need for skilled workers. To respond to this need, CLC is devoting even more resources dedicated to increasing the opportunity to supply a skilled workforce.”

CLC used the MSI funds to target communities with the greatest need such as veterans, which Rosales is a part of having served honorably for 20 years after first enlisting in 1987. His two sons, Aaron and Adam, were born during that time. As Rosales puts it, they placed a huge importance on learning despite the cost of college.

“With my meager military income, my wife and I were not able to save the college funds for our two sons. However, we knew very well that a college fund is not the ultimate solution to put a kid through school,” said Rosales. “My oldest has a degree in history and a master’s in human resource development, while our second child recently graduated with a bachelor’s in engineering mechanics and is pursuing a master’s in engineering.”

It was his younger son who told Rosales about computer-aided-design (CAD). Rosales always loved drawing out plans by hand and was fascinated by the prospect of CAD. Once he earns his certificate, with an emphasis in mechanical drawing, he hopes to join forces with his son and help him start a manufacturing company. 

“I am eternally indebted being chosen as a recipient of the Metallica Scholarship award,” said Rosales. “The generous scholarship will be put to very good use.” 

Rosales doesn’t plan to let his CLC education end with his CAD certificate. He hopes to enroll in welding classes during a future summer session. 

About College of Lake County:

The College of Lake County is a comprehensive community college committed to equitable, high-quality education, cultural enrichment and partnerships to advance the diverse communities it serves in northeastern Illinois. Offered at three campuses in Grayslake, Vernon Hills and Waukegan or online, classes are affordable and accessible to help each student achieve academic, career and personal goals. More than 70,000 students graduated with degrees and certificates since the college opened in 1969. The College of Lake County is the only higher-education institution ranked among the top 15 best places to work in Illinois by Forbes and is a national leader in many areas, including sustainability and conservation.