Press Releases

MCAN Kicks Off Year-Long High School Counselor Training

Fourth annual training program to teach 150 counselors strategies to help students to further education 

Sept. 27, 2016 - LANSING, Mich. – One hundred and fifty high school counselors from around the state began training from the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) on tactics and strategies they can use to increase the number of students attending college. The training spans a year of courses that will equip counselors with strategies to help students further their post-secondary education.

MCAN’s fourth annual School Counselor Postsecondary Planning Training Course will include information on financial aid programs, how to help with the college application process, how to work with special populations and navigating other obstacles students sometimes find in the path to furthering their education.

The professional development course will continue throughout 2016-2017 and will a mix of in-person sessions and online coursework. These courses aim to teach counselors tactics to help all students, but are especially targeted at getting more low-income and students of color to attend college, as well as students who would be first generation college students.

“There are 466 graduate programs in the country for school counselors, but only two programs require a course in college admission advising,” said Brandy Johnson, MCAN executive director. “In order to achieve MCAN’s goal of increasing Michigan’s postsecondary attainment rate to 60 percent by 2025, we need to enhance counselors’ existing training so they have the knowledge and skills to help even more students get to college.”

Michigan college advising and postsecondary planning experts coordinate and lead 12 sessions about the college access and postsecondary planning space, including:

·         College affordability planning
·         College admission processes
·         College and career assessments
·         Academic planning for college readiness
·         College aspirations
·         Enrichment and extracurricular engagement
·         Transition from high school graduation to college enrollment

A maximum of 150 counselors could enroll in the eight-month program. The course is a mix of in-person sessions and online readings, activities research and discussion board posts. Since 2013, MCAN has trained more than 330 high school counselors in postsecondary attainment.

“High school counselors play a pivotal role in preparing Michigan high school students socially, academically, logistically and financially for postsecondary education,” Johnson said. “MCAN is doing its best to helping them fulfill that role."

For more information about the School Counselor Postsecondary Planning Training Course, please visit http://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 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
 

National College Access Network Hosts Conference in Detroit

College access professionals meet in Michigan to discuss postsecondary attainment

Sept. 20, 2016 - LANSING, Mich.The National College Access Network (NCAN) held its annual conference this week at the Renaissance Center in Detroit. The event is the largest of its kind in the country and brought more than 1,000 college access professionals together to discuss strategies to increase postsecondary attainment. The conference sessions focused on showcasing successful college access strategies with experts and professionals from throughout the nation.

“We’re committed to moving the needle in our state to increase college attainment and are honored NCAN chose to host its conference in Michigan,” said Brandy Johnson, executive director, Michigan College Access Network. “We’re excited to share our experiences with education professionals and learn more about the college access methods that are working in other states.”

The three-day event hosted by the National College Access Network highlighted many distinguished speakers, including:

  • Jaime Casap, chief education evangelist, Google, who spoke about technology, education and innovation.

  • Tonya Allen, president and CEO, Skillman Foundation, who outlined Detroit’s plan to increase educational attainment.

  • Michael Middleton, interim president, University of Missouri System, who discussed equity and access in higher education.

  • Carol D’Amico, Lisa Katz and the Honorable Sandy Baruah, who highlighted how employers, government and nonprofits can collaborate to solve the mismatch of available skills and employer needs.

There also were a number of effective practice workshop sessions that included: engaging parents through text messages, mobilizing cohesive state policy agenda, sharing solutions for student success and tips and tools to encourage students to think about paying for college.

“Increasing postsecondary attainment isn’t a one-size fits all approach. It’s about collaboration and implementing best practices from other states that help arm professionals with tools and strategies to make a difference in the lives of students,” said Johnson.

For more information on the NCAN National Conference, please visit http://www.collegeaccess.org/2016Conference.

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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: Allie Ciaramella
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Cell: 971-241-1408
 

 

New Grant to Launch Text Messaging Program to Help Students Prepare for College


Sallie Mae Fund grant awards $9,000 to MCAN in an innovative effort to reach students

Sept. 12, 2016 - LANSING, Mich. — The Sallie Mae Fund has awarded a $9,000 grant to the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) to launch a new texting initiative aimed at reaching students. This innovative program will text message students crucial reminders throughout the school year to submit college applications, apply for financial aid and other coordinated efforts to improve college readiness, enrollment and completion throughout Michigan.

This grant is part of a coordinated effort by MCAN to reach its goal of increasing the percentage of Michigan residents with degrees or postsecondary certificates to 60 percent by the year 2025.

“These grants are fueling innovation to reach students and ensure they comply with necessary benchmarks to pursue postsecondary education,” MCAN Executive Director Brandy Johnson said. “We appreciate the Sallie Mae Fund’s generosity with this grant and think it will provide a unique tool connecting with students by texting them directly on their cell phones.”

The Sallie Mae Fund’s grant will provide funding for the pilot program that will send educational text messages to students over the 2016-17 school year, reaching nearly 3,000 students across Michigan. College advisers and high schools will work to onboard students into the texting program.

The Sallie Mae Fund is a charitable organization and supports expanding pathways for the successful development of America’s youth by supporting programs and initiatives that help open doors to higher education.

To learn more about the Michigan College Access Network and their efforts to improve Michigan’s college attainment rate, visit http://www.micollegeaccess.org/

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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
 

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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