Henry Ford College (HFC) is leading the way in college affordability and innovation, with help from government and nonprofit partners. The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunities (LEO) awarded HFC a grant of $ 150,000 and the Kresge Foundation awarded the College a grant of $ 50,000.
The two grants will help fill funding gaps for students attending HFC through one of the state’s two free tuition programs: Futures for Frontliners and Michigan Reconnect. The Kresge scholarship targets students of Futures for Frontliners. The LEO grant will help students of both programs.
The LEO grant provides funding for HFC’s new Secondary Business and Education for Underserved Populations (STEP-UP) program over a two-year period. This innovative, enveloping program is narrowly focused on helping students succeed in obtaining certificates or diplomas and launching into rewarding careers. An instructional coach will work one-on-one with mature students to provide targeted and personalized support. All students in the program will take a College Success course. STEP-UP will meet basic needs, career exploration, as well as job preparation, and connect students with employers. The College will match the LEO grant for this purpose.
The Kresge grant will provide scholarships of $ 250 to 100 students to offset the cost of textbooks. Textbook costs were noted by HFC students during the 2021 winter semester as one of the top unmet needs.
Futures for Frontliners is a program funded by the Governor’s Emergency Fund, under the CARES Act, to enable frontline workers to earn a college degree or diploma that will lead to well-paying employment and a career path in industries that Michigan needs. The State of Michigan covers tuition fees for Futures for Frontliners students and compulsory fees at HFC.
MI-Reconnect is a program for Michigan residents over the age of 25 who do not have a college degree. It covers the cost of tuition in the district for an associate’s degree or a career certificate.
“These scholarships are great news for our students. We are grateful to LEO and the Kresge Foundation for providing these funds as an investment in the academic and professional success of students in Michigan. Our partners from both organizations share a vision for students to graduate from college and advance in their careers or start a new career, ”said HFC President Russell Kavalhuna. “For many of these students, Futures for Frontliners and the Michigan Reconnect program are a bridge to college entry. These programs have already helped thousands of Michigan citizens. And these significant grants from LEO and Kresge go significantly further in our support by providing the tools Henry Ford College students need to be successful.
Information on how to apply for grant funds will be provided to students enrolled in the Futures for Frontliners and Michigan Reconnect programs.