Decision Day 2018 Recap: Celebrating the Journey to Higher Education

As the school year comes to a close and seniors are preparing for their next steps after graduation, the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) is taking a moment to reflect on our statewide Decision Day celebrations. Over 250 participating Michigan high schools, from Painesdale to Detroit, took to the month of May to celebrate their seniors’ decisions to pursue postsecondary education. These events ranged from pep rallies to school fairs, and recognized a combined 37,000 seniors in front of their fellow students. Decision Day events celebrate graduating seniors, build a college-going culture in schools, and inspire younger students to take the first steps on their journey to higher education. These events are widely attended by underclassmen; this year’s celebration included an estimated 51,200 non-seniors who participated. These numbers are significant given that 88% of surveyed host sites agreed that the initiative benefited their efforts to build a college-going culture in their school, and 83% believe that it will have a positive impact on college attainment and/or enrollment. 


The most successful of these celebrations extend beyond the school building itself, and engage the local community. This engagement comes from a variety of sources and looks differently from community to community. Many local businesses donate materials or sponsor events, nonprofits often provide volunteers or help plan the event, while local media may cover events or publish lists of seniors with their decisions. Higher education institutions also often provide giveaways, speakers, and/or mascots to help elevate the work of the high schools. All of these pieces help ensure that seniors feel supported by their community as they begin their journey to and through postsecondary education.

Congratulations to the Class of 2018! We look forward to working with Class of 2019 next school year.


Connor McLaughlin, Program Associate
Posted: June 6, 2018

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