Skip Navigation

College News

Governor Pritzker joined by local leaders, tout Lakeshore Campus construction

by Public Relations and Marketing | Published Mar 10, 2021

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker visited Waukegan on March 3, 2021 to celebrate College of Lake County’s (CLC) Lakeshore Campus and tout what $35 million of the state’s Rebuild Illinois plan is going towards. The top ticket item on campus: the brand-new student center. 

“Even in a pandemic, especially in a pandemic, we must invest in our state’s future,” said Governor Pritzker. “The number one way to create a stronger future is investing in our young people, and that’s why I’m so glad to celebrate the new Student Center at the College of Lake County. This will be a shining example of what can be achieved when we invest in our future.” 

Gov PresserHaving begun in late 2020, construction is well underway on the six-story, 62,692 square foot building which includes a community meeting space. At the time of the governor’s visit, nearly all digging had been done and crews were preparing to begin pouring the foundation.

Photo: from left to right, State Representative Rita Mayfield, CLC President Dr. Lori Suddick, Governor J.B. Pritzker, State Senator Adriane Johnson, State Senator Melissa Bush, Waukegan Mayor Sam Cunningham

“The student center will be a beautiful addition to the downtown Waukegan area, but we know that a building is not what is important. It’s what we accomplish within it,” said CLC President Dr. Lori Suddick. “It’s a space to do more programming like the Transform Lake County Workforce Equity Initiative grant where wrap-around supports, financial resources and skills training packaged together are successfully creating a diverse local talent supply.” 

LS Construction 1Governor Pritzker was not the only government leader to hear an update on construction.  He was joined by several others, each with their own reason to be excited about the project.

Photo: with excavation nearly complete crews prepare to begin pouring the foundation of the new student center

“This is reinvesting in the State of Illinois, County of Lake and the City of Waukegan, and reinvesting for the future of our society, our young men and our young ladies,” said City of Waukegan Mayor Sam Cunningham. “That’s what this is all about for me. Waukegan is a minority majority community. You cannot get a piece of America without coming to Waukegan.” 

“I’m truly excited for what these renovations mean for Waukegan. This city is a main street community and the newly renovated college will take us one step further to a vibrant downtown,” said State Representative Rita Mayfield. “We’re going to have more jobs down here, even more restaurants and we’re going to expand our cultural offerings.” 

“The Rebuild Illinois program has invested millions of dollars in education to ensure students have access to state-of-the-art facilities they need to reach their goals,” said State Senator Adriane Johnson. “We are so thrilled to support this initiative.” 

“Students, whether they’re 21 or 61, are literally our future,” said State Senator Melinda Bush. “The education they receive, the connections they make and the skills they learn allow them to become the best versions of themselves. Without robust educational facilities, those skills, those opportunities, can be lost.” 

Completion of the Student Center is expected by fall 2022.  Read more about the space here

About College of Lake County: 

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, college 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. Learn more at or call (847) 543-2000.