Press Releases

MCAN applauds HB 4181 passing out of Senate Education Committee

HB 4181 would strengthen boost efforts to improve counselor training 

Oct. 3, 2017 - LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) supports the latest legislative effort to strengthen requirements for school counselors. House Bill 4181, introduced by Rep. Brett Roberts (R- Charlotte), would require school counselors to receive training on career and college advising to help guide the decision-making of high school students. HB 4181 was approved out of the Senate Education Reform Committee Tuesday. This legislation aims to bolster school counselors’ proficiency when it comes to helping students pursue postsecondary opportunities.

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. 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 39.4 percent in 2015.

To ensure that students have up-to-date, accurate information when choosing a postsecondary education path, it is essential that counselors receive the training that is needed to help students develop their plans.

“Arming counselors with the information and materials they need to guide students is a win/win and sets both Michigan’s counselors and students up for success,” said Brandy Johnson, MCAN executive director. “We have offered counselor training courses to supplement and strengthen the efforts and impact counselors make every day in the lives of students. Postsecondary credentials are essential in today’s knowledge-based economy and school counselors must have the proper training to help students navigate every aspect of the college-going process – academic, financial and social.”

MCAN currently offers various counselor training courses for counselors, in addition to scholarships for professional development. Most notably are the School Counselor Postsecondary Training Course and the Advanced Counselor Course which cover advanced topics in college and career advising. To date, approximately 450 Michigan school counselors have participated in the course.

For more information about MCAN’s counselor offerings visit www.micollegeaccess.org/events/school-counselor-training.

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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 seventh 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 39.4 percent in 2015. Additionally, it is estimated another 4 percent of Michiganders have a high-quality certificate, bringing Michigan’s official attainment rate to 43.4 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
Deputy Director for Partnerships and Advocacy
Email: Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF)

Gov. Snyder Declares October Michigan College Month

High schools across state hosting college application and financial aid campaigns throughout the month

Sept. 28, 2017 - LANSING, MICH. — Hundreds of high schools statewide will kick off Michigan College Month on October 1. Michigan College Month aims to ensure that every graduating senior has submitted at least one college application and applied for Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) by the end of the month.

As part of the celebration, high schools will host concurrent college application and financial aid campaigns throughout the month. 

“As the global economy increasingly requires more people with postsecondary skills, it’s important that we continue to support students in their efforts to pursue higher education,” said Gov. Rick Snyder. “A 21st Century education is a valuable tool that can help prepare Michigan’s young people for future success.”

Hundreds of schools throughout Michigan will be designated host sites where activities will take place to guide high school seniors through completing a college application or applying for financial aid. Resources and materials will be provided to school counselors and educators by Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) and schools will be dedicating classroom time to isolating the different parts of the application process so that seniors have a clear step-by-step understanding of how to determine what schools or training fits their needs.

In collaboration with area high schools, many Michigan colleges will be waiving their application fees or removing financial barriers that may hold students back.

“We want every high school senior to believe they’re college material by submitting at least one college application and applying for financial aid,” said Brandy Johnson, MCAN Executive Director. “Navigating the college-going process is intimidating and this will help students understand this process, particularly first-generation college students.”

In the past, the push was to submit college applications for one week in October. MCAN, partnering with the governor’s office, decided to expand the campaign from one week to a month and to combine applying for financial aid and applying to colleges. During the 2015 College Application Week, more than 48,000 college applications were submitted. 81.5 percent of graduating seniors participated in College Application Week activities and 66 percent of students completed their first college application during the week.

“Since we kicked off our efforts in 2011, we have continued to see the needle move to increase the number of students pursuing postsecondary education,” Johnson said. “We hope expanding our efforts throughout the entire month of October will continue to grow our efforts to provide an educated and sustainable workforce for Michigan.”

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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 seventh 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 39.4 percent in 2015. Additionally, it is estimated another 4 percent of Michiganders have a high-quality certificate, bringing Michigan’s official attainment rate to 43.4 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
Deputy Director for Partnerships and Advocacy
Email: Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF)

MCAN encourages Congress to take quick action on DACA


Sept. 7, 2017 - LANSING, Mich. - The following statement can be attributed to Brandy Johnson, executive director and Sharlonda Buckman, board chair of the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) in response to this week’s announcement regarding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program:

"Every Michigander has a unique ancestry and past, one that is intricately woven into our state’s history. We are a diverse state and our organization will continue to lead with our core belief that college is for everyone. Our work is rooted in the belief that every student deserves access to education and training beyond high school. In today’s knowledge-based economy, postsecondary education is not a luxury for some, but a necessity of everyone. 

Our organization encourages Congress to act quickly to clarify the status of those currently covered under Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Until Congress determines what’s next, we will stay steadfast in our commitment by ensuring every student is prepared socially, logistically, academically and financially for postsecondary education.”

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 seventh 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 39.4 percent in 2015. Additionally, it is estimated another 4 percent of Michiganders have a high-quality certificate, bringing Michigan’s official attainment rate to 43.4 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
Deputy Director for Partnerships and Advocacy
Email: Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF) 

70 Michigan high schools to kick off school year with college advisers

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

Aug. 28, 2017 - LANSING, Mich. – 56 college advisers from across the state will start the school year serving 70 Michigan high schools. This is the third year of the AdviseMI program and the specially trained advisers will help more students make it into college in the 2017-2018 school year. The advisers are being placed strategically into communities where there is a lower percentage of students pursuing college after high school.

Each adviser is a recent college graduate and attended an intense four-week training this summer. The advisers will work alongside counselors and other staff to encourage high school students to apply to college and assist with financial aid applications. Michigan high school counselors currently average caseloads of more than 700 students, 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.

“The advisers in this program are intentionally recent graduates to offer a near-peer understanding of the college-going process,” said Brandy Johnson, MCAN executive director. “Many of the advisers requested to be placed in their home-towns or communities they have already served to continue their efforts and make a difference in the lives of high school students. The rigorous training we hold in the summer offers a unique opportunity to ensure our advisers are fully prepared to help students navigate the sometimes overwhelming path to pursuing postsecondary education.”

Some advisers will split their time between two high schools, allowing a broader reach in communities across the state. Advisers will assist students navigating 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 17 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, Siena Heights University, University of Michigan-Dearborn, University of Michigan-Flint, Wayne State University and Western Michigan University.

To see the full list of 70 high schools receiving a college adviser, 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 seventh 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 39.4 percent in 2015. Additionally, it is estimated another 4 percent of Michiganders have a high-quality certificate, bringing Michigan’s official attainment rate to 43.4 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
Deputy Director for Partnerships and Advocacy
Email: Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF) 

MCAN applauds Congress for passing Forever GI Bill for college aid

Aug. 15, 2017 - LANSING, Mich.The following can be attributed to Brandy Johnson, executive director, Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) in response to legislation providing college aid to military veterans:

"Providing college aid to our veterans recognizes the sacrifices of our brave men and women. We applaud Congress for passing the “Forever GI Bill” that would provide the largest expansion of college aid to veterans in 10 years and encourage President Trump to sign this bill. This legislation eliminates the 15-year time limit on the use of postsecondary education benefits as well as restores benefits to veterans affected by closures of for-profit institutions. Hundreds of thousands of veterans are estimated to be eligible for these benefits. The “Forever GI Bill” aligns with MCAN’s belief that college is for everyone. When veterans return home, they should have every opportunity available to pursue postsecondary credentials and meaningful careers. This bill is a crucial step toward giving support, especially to the people who have given so much to their country.

 

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 seventh 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 39.4 percent in 2015. Additionally, it is estimated another 4 percent of Michiganders have a high-quality certificate, bringing Michigan’s official attainment rate to 43.4 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
Deputy Director for Partnerships and Advocacy
Email: Sarah(a)micollegeaccess.org
Cell: 313-355-4078

Download Press Release (PDF)



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