ECC a semi-finalist for the $1 million Aspen Prize; the Elgin Rotary Foundation raises funds for Ukraine; Memorial Day event takes place at Willow Lakes Estates – Chicago Tribune

Elgin Community College is one of 25 semi-finalists for the 2023 $1 Million Aspen Award for Community College Excellence.

Awarded once every two years by the Colorado-based Aspen Institute, the award recognizes community colleges with strong achievements in teaching and learning, obtaining a certificate and diploma, the transfer and bachelor’s degree completion, workforce success, and equitable outcomes for students of color and students from low-income backgrounds.

This is the fourth time that ECC has made the list of Top 25 Community Colleges from which the winner is chosen. Ten finalists will be announced in June and the winner named in spring 2023.

The Elgin Breakfast Rotary Club Foundation collects donations to support humanitarian relief efforts for the people of war-torn Ukraine.

Club president Mike Warren said 100% of the money donated will go to aid, and the group has already donated items worth more than $5,000 to the effort.

The money is being distributed through Rotary clubs in Ukraine or those providing direct aid to Ukraine, Warren said.

Rotary Club Elgin Breakfast also posts live and past meetings with the International Rotary Club of Lviv in Ukraine, which can be viewed at

To make a donation, go to or mail your checks to the Elgin Breakfast Rotary Foundation, PO Box 851, Elgin, IL 60121.

For more information, contact Alan Kirk at 847-815-4895 or [email protected]

A public Memorial Day service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, May 28 at the lower level of the Willow Lakes Estates clubhouse, 160 W. River Road, Elgin.

The subdivision created Memorial Island on its grounds in 2014 to honor military veterans from all six branches of the United States Armed Forces and to honor police officers, firefighters, and first responders.

The rally will feature honor and color guards, a prayer from Elgin Police Service Chaplain Al Keating, and comments from Elgin Mayor Dave Kaptain and police service representatives and Elgin and South Elgin Fire, Elgin Township and Kane County Sheriff’s Office.

The cake will be served afterwards. For more information, call Ray Russell at 630-745-7755.

The U-46 school district is set to trade in four smaller school buses for new diesel-powered models.

The new buses are purchased from Midwest Transit Inc. of Lombard. With a trade of $3,500, the cost of each is $119,497 or $474,488 in total.

Each bus seats up to 47 passengers and is used to transport students with special needs and kindergarten students. The trade-in buses were purchased in 2014 and have traveled over 137,000 miles.

According to district information, most major bus manufacturers are moving away from gasoline engines. Electric buses are three to four times more expensive than combustion engine vehicles, officials said.

Norma A. Roth