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The university will expand to Chicago, offering a diverse portfolio of career-changing degree and certificate programs at The Resurrection Project’s La Casa Residence Hall and Resource Center

RIVER FOREST, IL – After a century of educating students in River Forest, Dominican University is proud to announce its expansion into the city of Chicago to further extend its mission and access to its top-ranked academic programs.

In partnership with The Resurrection Project, Dominican will establish a Chicago campus in the vibrant Pilsen neighborhood, occupying Resurrection’s La Casa Residence Hall and neighboring Resource Center. This campus will be Dominican’s hub for a variety of programs, including a residential, cohort-based associate's degree, credit and non-credit workforce development certificate programs, adult degree completion options and select graduate programs (pending all appropriate accreditation and state approvals). Dominican developed this city immersion campus to offer a purposefully designed, cohort-based program to serve students from surrounding communities with a rigorous curriculum and community-based programs that build connections to career pathways. The expansion comes as Dominican University prepares to welcome its largest freshman class on record for the second year in a row.

The campus is slated to open in Fall 2024.

“For more than a century, Dominican University has expanded access to education, guiding generations of students to find their true calling,” said Dominican University President Dr. Glena Temple. “Our university’s legacy, built by the Sinsinawa Dominican Sisters, inspires us to continually adapt to meet the needs of the communities we serve, ensuring all students have the same opportunity to thrive and graduate — with purpose. It is in this spirit that we are proud to announce our expansion into the city of Chicago, creating a new campus that will further this mission.”

Programs That Build Paths Toward Career-Changing Outcomes

Dominican's new Chicago campus will offer an associate’s degree pathway, pending accreditation and state approval, with a job-ready focus at La Casa that utilizes Dominican’s hallmark wraparound support model. This model has promoted lasting success on the university's River Forest campus.

Students enrolled at the Chicago campus will reside in a living-learning community, with access to academic advising, tutoring, mentoring and career services at the same location in which they live.

Using a city-as-a-classroom approach, students will gain in-demand skills, preparing them for meaningful work in professions of critical need such as healthcare, technology and community services. In this way, they will be well-equipped to support the workforce upon graduation. They will be seamlessly accepted to Dominican’s bachelor’s degree programs should they choose to continue their studies.

In addition to an associate’s degree, the Chicago Campus will offer adult degree completion, certificate programs and graduate programs to community members. These programs, designed to support the local economy, have been intentionally shaped by relationships with community partners and guided by industry needs — starting initially with programs in healthcare, cybersecurity, legal studies, and leadership development using trauma-informed approaches. Students of all ages will gain experience in fields of critical need, preparing them to make an immediate impact.

The Resurrection Project’s La Casa and the Resource Center facilities are an ideal location for a satellite campus. The facility is occupancy-ready to house 100 students and accommodate three to four concurrent classrooms, and is accessible to public transportation and community amenities including restaurants, stores, and cultural activities.

“Our mission at Dominican is to embrace students of all backgrounds and tear down barriers to higher education,” said Dr. Barrington Price, Dominican University Vice President of Student Success and Engagement and Chicago Campus Executive Officer. “We have invested for years in the kinds of experiences and holistic support that ensure all students have the same opportunity to graduate with purpose, earning us recognition as the top performer in social mobility in Illinois. We are committed to providing students in the Near West Side, Lower West Side and North Lawndale communities with resources to find their calling and a career path.”

A Partnership Rooted in Mission

Dominican aims to serve the global majority and is proud to host a student population with over 70% students of color. Federally designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) in 2011, Dominican is committed to advancing opportunity and ensuring the social mobility of its students. The university has solidified itself as Chicago’s premier Catholic HSI and is the highest-ranking HSI in the Midwest in U.S. News & World Report’s 2023 rankings.

The Resurrection Project’s La Casa and the Resource Center facilities have been thoughtfully selected as the site of the Chicago Campus. For 33 years, The Resurrection Project has been committed to its mission of creating community ownership, building community wealth, and serving as stewards of community assets in Chicago’s primarily Hispanic southwest side neighborhoods. The organization believes social change starts at the community level, and it supports this development by providing financial wellness, affordable housing, immigration services and community leadership development services.

“Dominican University’s community development and social mobility mission is closely aligned with ours,” said Raul Raymundo, Chief Executive Officer of The Resurrection Project and La Casa Resource Center. “From the beginning of our partnership, Dominican has been intentional about opening a Chicago Campus that is responsive and connected to the community where it resides. We are thrilled to welcome Dominican to the Pilsen community and for the opportunities this campus will afford our residents, community organizations and businesses.”

The Chicago Campus will further Dominican University’s objective of having a long-term presence in the community that provides partnerships, workforce development and community engagement.

About Dominican University

Founded in 1901, Dominican University is a comprehensive, coeducational Catholic institution offering bachelor’s and master’s degrees through the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences, the Borra College of Health Sciences, the Brennan School of Business and the College of Applied Social Sciences. The university also offers doctoral degrees in information studies and applied social justice. U.S. News & World Report ranks Dominican University among the top 15 of all Midwest regional master’s level universities, and #1 in Illinois for innovation, best value, commitment to undergraduate teaching, and ensuring the social mobility of its graduates.   

About The Resurrection Project

The Resurrection Project (TRP) builds trusting relationships to educate and propel individuals, immigrants, and families to achieve their social and economic aspirations, stable homes, and equitable participation in their community. TRP is a leading provider of affordable housing, financial education, and immigration services on Chicago’s Southwest side.

For more than three decades TRP has worked to improve the lives of individuals and families by creating wealth, building assets, and engaging residents to be catalysts for change. Rooted in the Pilsen community, TRP’s impact now extends across the City of Chicago and through the State of Illinois. It is making steady progress toward leveraging and preserving more than $1 billion in community wealth by 2025.