Elgin Community College Adjunct Faculty in Adult Education, Erin Vobornik, MA, has been named an inaugural Coalition on Adult Basic Education (COABE) State Advocate for Adult Education Fellow for 2021.
"Erin Vobornik has been an integral part of the ABEC division for several years, both as an adjunct faculty member and as an administrator," said Elizabeth Hobson, EdD, dean of adult education. "I am very excited for her as she starts this fellowship and knows she will be a highly effective advocate for adult education."
The fellowship is a hands-on advocacy training program for adult educators, adult learners, and friends of adult education. During the yearlong program, fellows will learn how to work with the media, their communities, and policymakers to create change benefiting adult learners and adult education programs. Topics include writing policy pieces for media publication, presenting to Members of Congress, governors, and other key policymakers, and organizing around local programs for adult learners.
“Training and mentoring on advocating for policies, funding, and initiatives that serve adult education is hard to come by,” said Vobornik. “I had been working a grassroots effort by emailing state legislators, sharing policy initiatives via social media, and integrating self-advocacy into my ESL classes, but I was not sure that it was making an impact. Becoming part of a group of adult education professionals who will be forming and maintaining relationships with legislators and increasing visibility of the dire need for adult education and literacy classes is exciting.”
COABE’s mission is to inspire educators so adults succeed and communities thrive. The coalition exists to provide leadership, communication, professional development, and advocacy for adult education and literacy practitioners to advance quality services for all adult learners. COABE represents the field of 65,000 adult educators and provides a variety of services, including professional development through annual, state-of-the-art national conferences, more than 50 webinars annually, and a peer-reviewed journal. Learn more at COABE.org.
For more information about ECC’s adult education programs, visit elgin.edu/adulteducation.