Press Releases

MCAN Education Statement

The following can be attributed to Brandy Johnson, executive director, Michigan College Access Network in response to the Michigan League for Public Policy Back to School Report: 

Sept. 9, 2016, LANSING, Mich. - "The findings from “Back to School Report” from the Michigan League for Public Policy of rising tuition and weak state support that is resulting in an increased financial burden for students are extremely disappointing. Investing in Michigan’s universities and community colleges ultimately means investing in Michigan residents and our state’s economic future. 

There is a proven connection between the number of people with postsecondary degrees and a state’s economic stability. A different report released in December,Reaching for Opportunity: An Action Plan to Increase Michigan’s Postsecondary Credential Attainment, outlined the states with the highest degree and certificate attainment also have the highest incomes. Today, Michigan ranks 38th in the nation in personal income, $5,000 below the national average. The unexpected consequences of disinvestment in higher education add additional barriers to higher education. We need to encourage legislative support for higher education institutions if we are to reach Michigan’s goal to increase residents with postsecondary education to 60 percent by year 2025 and improve the economic prosperity of this state.” 

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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, 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.

 
Media Contact
Sarah Anthony
Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078
 

Forty-nine college advisers head to 62 Michigan high schools

Second year of AdviseMI helping more low-income and first-generation students get into college 

LANSING, Mich. – Sixty-two Michigan high schools will host 49 college advisers who will help more students make it into college in the 2016-2017 school year. The Michigan College Access Network’s (MCAN) AdviseMI program kicked off last year and has grown tremendously in its second year.

AdviseMI focuses on placing recent graduates to serve as college advisers in high schools with low college-going rates. They will work alongside school counselors and other staff to smooth the transition from high school to postsecondary education. Michigan high school counselors currently average caseloads of more than 700 students apiece, making it hard for them to provide one-on-one college advising or help students navigate the complex process of college admissions and financial aid.

“These advisers are ready to work directly with students to kick off the 2016 school year in order to make a big impact when it comes to understanding the college-going process,” said Brandy Johnson, MCAN executive director. “The advisers completed an intense training this summer and we’re excited to for them to head to their respective schools this fall.”

The college advisers will be ready to begin serving starting in fall 2016 at the high schools selected to participate in the AdviseMI program. Some advisers will split their time between two high schools, allowing a broader reach in communities across the state. After an intensive four-week training period, advisers will be poised to help students navigate the complex college exploration process, retake college admissions tests, apply to colleges that are a good match, complete the Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA), secure financial aid and enroll in a postsecondary institution.

The advisers are recent graduates from 16 partner colleges, including Adrian College, Alma College, Calvin College, Central Michigan University, Eastern Michigan University, Ferris State University, Grand Valley State University, Kalamazoo College, Madonna University, Northern Michigan University, Oakland University, Saginaw Valley State University, University of Michigan-Dearborn, University of Michigan-Flint, Wayne State University and Western Michigan University.

The following high schools are receiving advisers this fall, with new high schools indicated in bold:

 Northwest Michigan

  1. Manistee Middle High School & Brethren High School
  2. Lake City High School*

Northeast Michigan

  1. Alcona Community High School & Oscoda Area High School
  2. Alpena High School & ACES Academy

West Michigan

  1. Fennville Public High School & Saugatuck High School
  2. Grand Rapids University Preparatory Academy & Muskegon Heights Academy
  3. Montague High School
  4. Muskegon High School
  5. Vestaburg  Community High School
  6. Wyoming High School
  7. Plainwell High School*
  8. Hart High School & Shelby High School*
  9. Hastings High School*

East Central

  1. Bay City Central High School
  2. Bullock Creek High School & Academic and Career Education Academy
  3. Coleman Junior/Senior High School & Meridian Early College High School

Capital Area

  1. Maple Valley Jr/Sr High School & Relevant Academy of Eaton County

East Michigan

  1. Harbor Beach Community High School & Owendale-Gagetown Jr/Sr High School
  2. Bad Axe High School*
  3. Brown City & Marlette Jr/Sr High School*
  4. Port Huron High School
  5. Port Huron Northern High School
  6. Perry High School*

Southwest

  1. Benton Harbor & Countryside Academy
  2. Quincy High School*

Southeast

  1. East Jackson HS & Springport HS
  2. Monroe High School
  3. Washtenaw Alliance for Virtual Education

Metro Detroit

  1. Belleville High School
  2. Center Line High School
  3. Consortium College Prep High School
  4. Detroit Edison Public School Academy Early Colle­­­ge of Excellence
  5. East Detroit High School
  6. Ecorse Community High School
  7. Jalen Rose Academy
  8. John Glenn High School (Westland)
  9. Lincoln Park High School
  10. Melvindale High School
  11. Old Redford Academy
  12. Oscar A. Carlson High School
  13. Pershing High School
  14. River Rouge High School
  15. Robichaud Senior High School
  16. Southeastern High School
  17. Warren Mott High School
  18. Wayne Memorial High School
  19. Woodhaven High School
  20. Ferndale High School

 

To learn more about the AdviseMI program, visit: www.micollegeaccess.org/statewide-initiatives/advisemi

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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, 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.

Media Contact
Sarah Anthony
Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

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MCAN Innovative Program Grant Awarded to Grand Valley State University, Godwin Heights High School

The grant aims to help improve Michigan residents’ college readiness and completion of postsecondary degrees

Aug. 30, 2016, LANSING, Mich. – Grand Valley State University (GVSU) was awarded the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) Innovative Program Grant, one of the initiative’s first grants. This grant funding will be used to hire a graduate student college adviser to develop and maintain a college-going culture at Godwin Heights High School (GHHS).

“The Innovative Program Grants will help to strengthen college readiness and participation on a local level,” said Brandy Johnson, executive director, Michigan College Access Network. “The evidence is clear, postsecondary education increases students’ earning potential and job market competitiveness. We’re excited to see this program take off in West Michigan.”

Godwin Heights High School was selected because of their strong application and high percentage of low-income,  minority students, and students who will be first in their family to pursue postsecondary education. The presence of a college adviser will help students manage the college and financial aid application process. The college adviser will work alongside high school counselors to develop college readiness techniques conducive to students’ needs.

To achieve program goals, GVSU has agreed to recruit a current graduate student and equip him/her with an effective work plan. In return, GHHS will play a critical role in ensuring the students’ adoption of the college advising program. Successful implementation of the program will be based on metrics, including:

  • Percentage of parents who think it is very likely their child will earn a college education
  • Percentage of seniors completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)
  • Percentage of high school graduates enrolled in a higher education institution within one year

Innovative Program Grants are designed to fund programming that increases college readiness, enrollment and completion in local communities and across the state through grants of up to $10,000. For more information or to apply for the Innovative Program Grants, visit www.micollegeaccess.org/grants/innovative-programs-grant.

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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, 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.  


Media Contact

Sarah Anthony
Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF)

100 Michigan High Schools Selected to Receive MCAN “Reach Higher” Grants

“Reach Higher” is a program meant to help high school students pursue higher education

August 11, 2016 - LANSING, Mich. – As part of Michigan College Access Network’s (MCAN) “Reach Higher” Program, more than $500,000 will be awarded to 100 high schools across the state. Schools will each receive $5,000 grants to help students pursue postsecondary education. Reach Higher grants are geared toward creating a college-going culture inside high schools to increase the number of students furthering their education.

“Last year was the first year for Reach Higher grants, and they created the push we needed to help develop these goals inside Michigan high schools,” said Brandy Johnson, executive director of the Michigan College Access Network. “We have seen how these grants positively impact students’ decisions to go on to higher education, which is why we will continue with this successful program.”

High schools were selected based on a competitive grant review process.  Schools receiving the Reach Higher grants will address four essential elements of a high school strategy aimed at getting more students to attend college, including:

  • Establish a Postsecondary Advisory Council (PAC): Each PAC will set up a dedicated team to lead the college access strategy, including: administrators, counselors, college advisers, teachers and members of community based-organizations.

  • Reach Higher High School Self-Assessment: Each PAC will assess the current effectiveness of college and career readiness counseling, support, and programming.

  • Triad of College Access Events: Each PAC will plan and host college access events for seniors, including College Application Week in the fall, College Cash Campaign in the winter and College Decision Day in the spring.

  • Postsecondary Success Asset Mapping: Each PAC will evaluate the school’s college-going culture using a research-based survey and set of tools.

“These schools play an important role in making college readiness, participation and completion within their community possible through the Reach Higher program,” Johnson said.

The list of grant recipients includes: 

West
Allendale
Whitehall
Montague
Plainwell
Union
Maple Valley
Saugatuck
Wyoming
White Lake Area Community Education
Grand Rapids UPrep
Allegan Tech Center
Orchard View
Reeths-Puffer
Hastings
Vestaburg
Holton
Muskegon
Delton-Kellogg
Fennville
Ionia
Muskegon Heights Public School Academy
Walkerville

Southwest
Comstock
Niles
Bridgman

East Central
Coleman
Bullock Creek
ACEA
Meridian

South Central
Holt
Bath

East
Corunna
New Lothrop
Yale
Port Huron Northern
Harbor Beach
Bay City Central
Bay City Western
Port Huron
Owosso
Lincoln Alternative
Morrice
North Branch

Southeast
Pittsford
Ypsilanti Community
Ypsilanti New Tech
Milan
WAVE
Whitmore Lake
Hartland
Springport
Jonesville
Whiteford
Monroe
LISD Tech Center
Northwest
Adrian
Hillsdale
Lincoln Senior High
Madison

Metro Detroit
East Detroit
Warren Mott
Avondale Academy
Detroit International Academy for Young Women
Woodhaven
John F. Kennedy
John Glenn
Cody Academy of Public Leadership
Detroit School of Arts
Osborn College Prep
Lincoln Park
Belleville
Frederick Douglass Academy for Young Men
Detroit Cristo Rey
East English Village
Chandler Park
Osborn Evergreen
Academy of Design and Alternative Energy
Hazel Park
Loyola
Detroit Institute of Technology
Cody River
Cody River Rouge
Robichaud
Taylor Preparatory

Northwest
CASMAN
Onekama
Manistee
Manistee Catholic Central
Manton
Alanson
Pine River
Lake City
Mancelona
Pellston
Boyne City
Brethren
Petoskey

Northeast
Alcona
Alpena
ACES
Oscoda

Upper Peninsula
Gladstone
Escanaba
Hannahville Indian 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, 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.  

 

Media Contact
Sarah Anthony
Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF)

 

MCAN Hosts Regional "Reach Higher" Convening

“Reach Higher” aims to strengthen school counseling and advising to help more high school students pursue higher education

EAST LANSING, Mich. – As part of the First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Reach Higher Initiative,” the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) hosted a regional 2016 Reach Higher convening August 1-2.  The First Lady’s initiative strives to ensure all students understand the importance of furthering their education beyond high school. MCAN hosted the convening in partnership with six Midwestern states, including: Ohio, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa and Indiana.

The Reach Higher Midwest Convening was held at Michigan State University and brought together state teams made up of state agencies, school counselors, counselor educators and college access professionals to explore strategies to improve school counseling and college advising. 

“We’re working to educate students that a high school diploma is not enough to succeed in today’s global economy,” said Brandy Johnson, executive director of the Michigan College Access Network. “We’re honored to host the Reach Higher Convening in Michigan and proud to collaborate with states in our region on the best strategies to increase the number of students furthering their postsecondary education.”

Educators and policymakers increasingly realize the important role school counselors play in guiding students through their  postsecondary decisions. There is currently an average ratio of one counselor for every 471 students, making it clear more support is needed for counselors as they strive to help students.  The Reach Higher Initiative is committed to helping high school counselors assist more students continue their education beyond high school. 

“School counseling should not be an extra or a luxury just for school systems that can afford it,” Michelle Obama said. “School counseling is a necessity to ensure that all our young people get the education they need to succeed in today’s economy.”

In 2014, Reach Higher hosted a national convening at Harvard University that brought experts from the field together to discuss how to better support school counselors and college advising in their efforts to help every student reach their fullest potential. This led to six states organizing their own regional convenings in 2016, including Colorado, Oregon, Washington, Michigan, Massachusetts and Maryland.

At these convenings, state teams are encouraged to develop commitments that align with President Obama’s 2020 North Star goal to place the United States as one of the top nations with the highest proportion of college graduates in the world.

The Reach Higher Initiative is an administration-wide effort administered by the White House in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education.

Notable speakers from Monday and Tuesday’s event included Don Yu from Civic Nation and Rebecca Villareal from The Kresge Foundation. 

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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, 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.

Media Contact
Sarah Anthony
Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (Word)

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