Michigan College Access Network adds staff as it heads into its sixth year

 Organization restructuring, board changes and new hires to expand MCAN’s reach

April 19 - LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) is kicking off its sixth year with staff updates and an organizational restructuring intended to put MCAN in the best position to carry out its mission of increasing Michigan’s college readiness, participation and completion rates.

Cheryl McPherson has been named to the new position of director of finance and operations, bringing a wealth of experience in financial management, budgeting and human resources to MCAN. In this position, McPherson will manage MCAN’s internal operations with the support of Dawn Stemen, operations assistant, who joined MCAN in January.

“Given our exponential growth of services to students across the state over the last year, we knew our staff needed to grow,” said MCAN Executive Director Brandy Johnson. “We’re happy to welcome Cheryl McPherson to our staff.”

Before joining MCAN, McPherson worked for Oakland University School of Nursing as an assistant dean for finance and administration. Cheryl received a bachelor’s degree in public resources management from Michigan State University and a Master of Science Administration degree from Central Michigan University. She is also an active community volunteer and member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.

Earlier this year, MCAN launched a new organizational structure to streamline operations and build in more capacity. The aim of the restructuring was to allow the organization to work efficiently and effectively toward MCAN’s goal to increase Michigan’s postsecondary educational attainment rate to 60 percent by the year 2025. Michigan has recently experienced a modest increase in its college attainment rate, from 38.4 percent of 25-to-64-year-olds possessing at least an associate degree, to 39.3 percent.

MCAN’s strategic approach is still guided by the 11-person board of directors, which also has new members. Montcalm Community College President Robert (Bob) Ferrentino and Daniel Mitchell, who serves as an MSU College Advising Corps member in Northern Michigan.  

With its four new departments – capacity building, community investment, partnership and advocacy, and operations and finance – MCAN continues to grow in its ability to offer services to high school students making it easier for them to gain additional education after high school.  

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About Michigan College Access Network
As the leader in the state’s college access movement, MCAN’s mission is to increase Michigan’s college readiness, participation and completion rates, particularly among low-income students, first-generation college going students, and students of color. For the sixth year in a row, according to census data, Michigan’s postsecondary educational attainment rate has increased -- from 35.7 percent of 25-to-64-year-olds possessing at least an associate degree in 2008, to 39.3 percent in 2014. Additionally, it is estimated another 4 percent of Michiganders have a high-quality certificate, bringing Michigan’s official attainment rate to 43.3 percent. It is MCAN’s goal to increase Michigan’s postsecondary educational attainment rate to 60 percent by the year 2025. For more information, visit micollegeaccess.org.  

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Lisa King
Email: lisa(a)micollegeaccess.org 
Office: 517-316-1713
Cell: 313-451-1387

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