One Million Degrees

Chicago Department of Aviation and One Million Degrees Launch Partnership in Support of Community College Students

Innovative Airports Going Green Partnership Will Support Low-Income Community College Students


Chicago, IL -- (SBWIRE) -- 11/04/2014 -- One Million Degrees (OMD) is pleased to announce the launch of a partnership with the Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) and the Airports Going Green Steering Committee to support a cohort of low-income community college students pursuing degrees at City Colleges of Chicago in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields and Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics (TDL).

This partnership will be formally announced at the CDA’s seventh annual Airports Going Green Conference, the leading aviation industry forum on sustainability. The conference will take place from November 3-5, 2014 in downtown Chicago. This annual conference has served as a valuable tool for the CDA to educate industry experts, airport and airline professionals, contractors, consultants, environmentalists, and the media on its industry-leading sustainability efforts.

One Million Degrees, the CDA, and the Airports Going Green Steering Committee are teaming up to provide these students with comprehensive support services to help them excel in the classroom and beyond; scholarships to cover tuition and defray educational expenses, and professional coaching and mentoring from volunteers.

Going forward, the CDA and the conference Steering Committee will host an annual career exploration day so that OMD Scholars who are interested in STEM, TDL, and sustainability, energy, and aviation (SEA) can learn about careers in these high-growth industries. The Airports Going Green Conference support of OMD Scholars is made possible through generous donations from corporate sponsors that value student development and the growth of sustainability in the aviation industry.

“This partnership is an exciting example of how the City of Chicago and companies with an interest in Chicago can partner with community-based organizations to enrich the local talent pool and strengthen the competitiveness and capacity of our labor market,” said Paige Ponder, CEO of One Million Degrees. “This is a fantastic opportunity for our scholars, many of whom hope to establish careers in STEM, TDL, and SEA, to benefit from the guidance, insights, and support of the Airports Going Green Steering Committee.

“The Chicago Department of Aviation is pleased to partner with One Million Degrees to support Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s goal of helping Chicago students get the education and experience they need to succeed in some of the fastest growing sectors, including sustainability,” said Rosemarie S. Andolino, Commissioner, CDA. “The CDA has joined with many other U.S. and international airports to lead an ‘Airports Going Green’ movement that is advancing and promoting sustainability for the aviation industry. This effort is spurring new innovation and initiatives from airports, airlines and aviation stakeholders and creating future opportunities for students who pursue studies in sustainability.”

About One Million Degrees
One Million Degrees empowers low-income, highly motivated community college students to succeed in school, in work and in life. From tutors and coaches, to professional development and financial aid, One Million Degrees provides our scholars with supports that are critical to their success in the classroom and beyond.

If you would like to support or learn more about One Million Degrees, please contact

One Million Degrees
226 W. Jackson Blvd
Chicago, IL 60606
312-920-9605 or Fax 312-920-9607

About The Chicago Department of Aviation
The Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) is self-supporting, using no local or state tax dollars for operations or capital improvements at O’Hare and Midway International airports. Together, Chicago’s airports generate more than $45 billion in annual economic activity and create 540,000 jobs for the region.

Please visit to learn more about the Chicago Department of Aviation.

Jessica Besser-Rosenberg
One Million Degrees

Gregg Cunningham
Chicago Department of Aviation