Michigan College Access Leaders to Speak at National Conference

Lansing, MI – September 10, 2014 – A national conference focused on college access and success will feature two speakers from the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN).

The National College Access Network (NCAN) National Conference assembles college access professionals from across the country to discuss a variety of issues related to higher education. MCAN Executive Director Brandy Johnson and Assistant Director for Network Development Ryan Fewins-Bliss will be two featured speakers during the three-day event that runs Sept. 15-17 in Phoenix.

Johnson’s session, called “Mobilizing Cross-Sector Leaders for College Access & Success,” will highlight different tactics to rally community leaders to be champions in the college access movement. In Michigan, MCAN has successfully mobilized the governor, legislature, state superintendent and other relevant players to support college access statewide.

Johnson is no stranger to speaking on the national stage. In July, she was invited to join “The White House Opportunity Agenda,” a task force led by First Lady Michelle Obama that focused on the vital role of school counselors in impacting students’ college and career readiness. Johnson also spoke at the White House’s higher education summit in July.

Fewins-Bliss will lead a panel called “Increasing Post Secondary Attainment Through Local Networks.” The panel will share different strategies on how to create and sustain local college access networks. Michigan currently houses approximately 50 local networks with nearly 800 leaders and community members participating.

The NCAN National Conference is an annual event that provides attendees with a variety of opportunities to extend networking and learning opportunities. This year’s theme, “New Heights for College Access and Success,” will feature sessions related to best practice sharing and professional development around increasing post-secondary enrollment and success of first generation, low income and minority students.


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