Axios Chicago

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Happy Friday! On this day in 1966, the Beatles kicked off their last U.S. tour at the International Amphitheatre.

🌦 Today's weather: Cloudy with highs in the upper 70s.

πŸ‘‹ Situational awareness: We're back on Monday from a restful and restorative vacation. There's no members-only podcast today, but look for it next week!

Today's newsletter is 808 words β€” a 3-minute read.

1 big thing: Improving college success

Illustration of a graduation cap but the tassel is a ladder.
Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

Even though 69% of Chicago Public Schools freshmen this year aspire to go to college, only about 19% are likely to receive a bachelor's degree within 10 years of starting high school, according to a University of Chicago analysis.

What's happening: To try to remedy the issue, a program called OneGoal teams students up with a cohort of other college-aspiring peers during their junior year of high school and continues support through their freshman year of college.

Driving the news: Researchers at the U. of C.'s Inclusive Economy Lab β€” formerly called Poverty Lab β€” recently found significant benefits after analyzing the outcomes of more than 7,000 OneGoal fellows compared to peers who did not participate.

How it works: Principals and OneGoal instructors identify students they think would most benefit from the program, targeting those with GPAs between 2.0 and 3.0 and those who would be the first in their family to go to college.

  • Each cohort of students spends one class period a day together preparing for college during their junior and senior years.
  • Local participating schools include CPS' Crane, Simeon and South Shore high schools, as well as DePaul and Western Illinois universities.

The results: Compared to non-participating peers, OneGoal fellows are:

  • 46% more likely to enroll in college
  • 47% more likely to persist in college for at least two years
  • 40% more likely to complete a degree

Details: Inclusive Economy Lab executive director Carmelo Barbaro tells Axios that the lab's research adds to the literature on the efficacy of support-based college-completion programs.

  • Participation in Dell Scholars, he notes, has increased graduation "in six years by 9 to 13 percentage points."
  • And a similar support program called Bottom Line "increased college enrollment by 7 percentage points and [continued enrollment] to the second year by 8 percentage points, with larger effects among students with lower GPAs."

What they're saying: These programs "have important potential for designing a pathway toward greater postsecondary success for more of the city’s young people, including Black and Latinx students, who are disproportionately underserved," Barbaro says.

What's next: The Inclusive Economy Lab is conducting a multiyear randomized controlled trial looking at OneGoal fellows versus a control group of peers to evaluate longer-term impacts on their academic outcomes after the program.

2. Best Day Ever: Cliff Rome

Phoot of a man making food at a table.
Cliff Rome at a benefit for Ukraine earlier in the year. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

Chef and entrepreneur Cliff Rome is devoted to managing and developing talent and businesses on the South Side.

  • His group, Rome's Joy Companies, runs Peach's restaurants, a catering company, the Parkway Ballroom and Blanc art gallery.

What's happening: We recently caught up with Rome to get his Best Day Ever in Chicago:

🍴 Breakfast: "A simple breakfast of salmon croquettes at Peaches."

🚢🏽 Morning activity: "Walk by the lake near 31st Street Beach because it's close to the job."

🦞 Lunch: "The lobster roll at Restoration Hardware."

πŸ“– Afternoon activity: "Reading a book in the courtyard at the Parkway Ballroom. We have a beautiful space over there."

🌽 Dinner: "I'd go to Virtue and get the pan-seared salmon with wilted greens and some sort of corn relish."

🍸 Evening activity: "Drinks with friends in the garden at Piccolo Sogno."

Check out our Job Board

πŸ’Ό See who’s hiring around the city.

  1. Clinical Therapist - Mental Health at Envision Unlimited.
  2. Sr. Integrated Producer at FCB.
  3. Assistant Director, Digital Strategy at School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a job.

3. Tips and hot links

Illustration of the Chicago Cloud Gate bean sculpture reflecting the Axios logo.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

πŸš” The controversial Joint Public Safety Training Campus on the West Side is adding a mock neighborhood for police and firefighter training. The addition brings the price tag of the project to $128 million. (Block Club)

🚌 Mayoral candidate Willie Wilson says city officials are "out of touch" on public transit safety. (Sun-Times)

πŸ’Έ Ald. Ray Lopez filed an ordinance to prohibit Tax Increment Funding money going to the Chicago Park District if there are any changes to Soldier Field's name or its monuments. (ABC7)

🎰 Bally's officially filed its application with the Illinois Gaming Board on Wednesday, a major step for the first Chicago casino to be built. (Tribune)

πŸš‡ CTA president announced plans to improve public transit service, including hiring more workers and improving consistency, based on rider complaints. (ABC7)

πŸ”₯ If you still watch "Survivor" like our editors Everett and Emma, you'll want to read this profile on Xander Hastings, a standout contestant from Season 41. (Chicago magazine)

4. A reader survey

Animated illustration of a speech bubble with the Axios A making the tail of the bubble.
Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Thanks for reading the Axios Chicago newsletter every day. It means the world to us.

Driving the news: Our bosses asked us to ask you to take a reader survey.

  • It's important to better understand who you are and how our coverage can better serve you in the coming weeks, months and years.
  • We think it's great and hope you take the survey!

Zoom in: They also asked us if we had any extra questions to add, so we suggested:

  • How do you take your beef?
  • What's your favorite Chicago swear word?
  • '85 Bears or '96 Bulls?
  • When was your most recent Bill Murray sighting?
  • If you had a boat in Burnham Harbor, what would it be called?

Not surprisingly, they rejected our questions. Oh, well, we'll save them for the next survey 😜.

Our picks:

πŸ”Š Monica is already dancing in her chair thinking about this weekend's My House Music Festival in Pilsen.

🀩 Justin is excited for the Bud Billiken Parade tomorrow! The grand marshal is one of his favorite R&B artists, Jeremih. Let's celebrate going back to school, Chicago!

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