Gov. Whitmer Supports The Campaign for Free College Tuition

Higher education is always the scope of many conversations in Michigan. With college costs in Michigan being slightly higher than the U.S. average, any amount of assistance will help students. While high school seniors clamor to receive acceptance letters and attend college tours, The Campaign for Free College Tuition is making sure kids reach that threshold.

PHOTO: Andre Ellington

The Campaign for Free College Tuition held an event at the Detroit Regional Chamber to discuss the future of post-secondary education in Michigan. Gov. Whitmer was in attendance and addressed questions regarding her support for the program, education in Michigan and rapid changes in the workforce. An advocate for education and opportunity, Gov. Whitmer was in full support of the non-profit organizations’ activities. She also mentioned that it’s important for students to equip themselves for the sweeping changes to come in society.

“Having skills beyond high school is what makes you recession-proof,” Gov. Whitmer said.

PHOTO: Andre Ellington

Recently, Gov. Whitmer. issued a challenge for high schools to increase their FASFA completion rate. She spoke briefly about her “Governors FASFA Challenge” and how it impacts high school students.

“As my daughter was filling out her college applications, it’s very exciting but its daunting to go through the FASFA form,” Gov. Whitmer said. “You quickly understand why we’re pushing for a higher completion rate and why that’s so important. Both Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II and I have been a part of the FASFA challenge. We’ve partnered with MCAN (Michigan College Access Network) to make sure we get more people access to higher education. This is something that’s extremely important.”

The Campaign for Free College Tuition is an organization that strives to make college affordable for everyone. The program derived from conversations between elected officials who wanted to invest in the future of American schools. From there, policies were enacted to ensure that college could be an efficient option for all students.

Gov. Whitmer has also incorporated education-driven initiatives such as the MI Opportunity Scholarship and Michigan Reconnect proposals. The goal for Gov. Whitmer is to establish free education measures. She’s starting with a free community college program and moving forward from there.

“This program benefits the truly disadvantaged by inducing them to attend college, it helps the current Pell recipients when Pell falls short and it helps the middle class, who data show does need help,” Gov. Whitmer said. “Making community college free is a form of targeted universalism — it is rightly targeted at the institutions where nearly everyone has financial need.”

Free education in Michigan would be a beautiful thing, but there’s a ton of red tape that needs to be cut through before this happens. Colleges are for-profit institutions so it’s going to be interesting to see how these proposals will be put in place. For now, let’s encourage our children to seek out options post-grade school and apply themselves in everything they do.

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