OMD in the News

This year, OMD was the proud recipient of several awards that recognized our innovation, our Associates Board, and excellence in philanthropy. Through both print and TV, OMD’s work has been amplified throughout Chicagoland.

OMD Alumna Jackie Sanchez Profiled in the Chicago Tribune

After Jackie Sanchez was accepted at DePaul, she volunteered to become a One Million Degrees coach. “You can’t do it on your own,” Sanchez said. “I know I’m the one staying up nights and doing the homework, but you need someone in your corner. After I had that experience I just wanted to do more and give back.”

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OMD Wins Make It Better Philanthropy Award

OMD was recognized in the Education category as “an impactful and inspiring organization” and selected for its combination of “excellence, scalability, efficiency, leadership and effectiveness.”

As part of the award, OMD received a specially produced video profile highlighting its work helping scholars enter the workforce.

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OMD CEO Talks Community College Success on WGN’s The Download

OMD CEO Paige Ponder joined Justin Kaufmann on WGN’s The Download to talk about why community colleges have been overlooked when it comes to getting students prepared for life after school and how OMD is changing that.

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OMD’s Associates Board Wins Young Nonprofit Professionals Network award

The Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of Chicago (YNPN Chicago) awarded OMD’s Associate Board as the 2017 Associate Board of the Year. “As ambassadors for One Million Degrees, and for low-income, first-generation college students, OMD’s Associates Board is advocating for the importance of a community college degree, soft skills development, and forging a path into the middle class.” – Michaela McGill, Senior Manager, Volunteer & Alumni Programs.

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OMD wins Chicago Innovation Award

One Million Degrees Chief Executive Officer Paige Ponder and Chief Program Officer Veronica Herrero joined Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and winners of the 2016 Chicago Innovation Awards — the Chicago region’s foremost annual celebration of innovation — in New York City on Monday, March 27 to ring the closing Nasdaq Bell. The event, arranged by the Chicago Innovation Awards, highlights the groundbreaking work One Million Degrees has pioneered to serve and graduate the region’s community college students, as well as the surge of innovation taking place across Chicago.

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OMD Featured on ABC Chicago’s NewsViews

OMD CEO Paige Ponder and OMD Alumna Olivia Cruz sat down with Judy Hsu on ABC Chicago’s Sunday morning news show, NewsViews, to discuss the important supporting role OMD plays for its 700 scholars. Learn more about OMD’s core programming along with its expansive reach across the greater Chicago community by watching the interview on ABC’s website.

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WTTW’s Chicago Tonight Profiles One Million Degrees’ Malcolm X Program

Chicago Tonight reporter Brandis Friedman spent four hours shadowing OMD Scholar Nika Pruitt around Malcolm X College, learning more about the obstacles she faces, her determination to become a radiologist, and the support OMD provides her. “These are the strivers,” OMD CEO Paige Ponder tells Friedman, “they’re killing themselves to get ahead, and to do what society is asking them to do, to add value to the economy and be able to support their families long term. Why would we not want to give them every bit of support we possibly can?”

Watch Chicago Tonight’s full segment to learn more about the difference OMD is making Nika’s life, along with the lives of hundreds of other community college scholars across the Chicago community.

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OMD’s Aon apprenticeship featured in Crain’s Chicago

Aon’s apprenticeship program is bringing a workforce model most commonly seen in trades to the financial services industry. Community-college students are working paid internships at Aon while earning their degrees and receiving personal, holistic supports from One Million Degrees. For Aon, this helps to fill positions and reduce turnover. The apprentices are learning invaluable skills such as time management and working in teams.

Read the full article, reprinted from Crain’s Chicago Business (PDF) »