Crain’s Chicago Business: Community colleges can now build affordable housing close to campus—here’s how it can help vulnerable students

You read that right: A new law sets the stage for community colleges to build dormitories and apartments that backers say will improve the odds of success for students facing housing insecurity and other challenges.

State Rep. Nick Smith

By Dennis Rodkin and Elyssa Cherney

Now that he’s a member of the Illinois General Assembly, Nick Smith isn’t embarrassed to say he struggled early in college. As he bounced back and forth between classes and his job, he spent little time on campus.