Lawrence Tech Hosts Bill Signing to Establish the Michigan Achievement Scholarship

On Oct. 11, Lawrence Technological University in Southfield hosted the signing of a bipartisan state bill establishing the Michigan Achievement Scholarship, which will lower the cost of college by thousands of dollars a year for a majority of high school graduates.
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At Lawrence Technological University Oct. 11 Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs the bill establishing the Michigan Achievement Scholarship. // Courtesy of Lawrence Tech
At Lawrence Technological University Oct. 11 Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signs the bill establishing the Michigan Achievement Scholarship. // Courtesy of Lawrence Tech

On Oct. 11, Lawrence Technological University in Southfield hosted the signing of a bipartisan state bill establishing the Michigan Achievement Scholarship, which will lower the cost of college by thousands of dollars a year for a majority of high school graduates.

“The new Michigan Achievement Scholarship will provide foundational financial resources to help students attend Lawrence Tech (and other state institutions) and receive a high-quality STEM theory and practice education,” says Tarek Sobh, president of Lawrence Tech.

“The lower cost of higher education provided by the scholarship will have a generational impact as we facilitate and train students for a workforce of opportunity and prosperity. It is an investment that opens doors of opportunity to a variety of students attending higher education in all domains to ensure they have the skills and credentials to compete in the technological future of tomorrow.

“When we invest in our youth, we are investing in the future, and Lawrence Tech is here to prepare our students for a future of possibilities.”

Starting with the class of 2023, high school graduates statewide will be eligible for more financial aid from the state, up to:

  • $2,750 a year if they attend a community college.
  • $5,500 a year if they attend a public university.
  • $4,000 a year if they attend a private college or university.

Students will be eligible if their family demonstrates financial need when they complete the federal FAFSA form. The Michigan Achievement Scholarship will cover:

  • 94 percent of students attending community colleges.
  • 76 percent of students attending a public university.
  • 79 percent of students attending a private college or university.

The event also featured three panel discussions with community and business leaders to discuss how the state can continue to make progress on goals outlined in the MI New Economy plan.

Many of the panels discussed barriers faced by Michiganders in attending higher education or trade school. Beverly Walker-Griffea, president of Mott Community College in Flint, said many students have food, housing, and child-care challenges — and that MCC has added a “family center” to deal with them.

Tod Smith, Michigan director of training for the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters, urged parents and students to consider trade school — in his case, tuition-free, with apprentice carpenters earning $20 to $40 an hour while they learn.

Several panelists, including Marti Fittante, CEO of the Upper Peninsula economic development group Invest UP, said the lack of broadband access remains a barrier. So does affordable housing — and Amin Irving, CEO of Novi-based Ginosko Development Co., said his company is responding by building a 105,000-square-foot factory in Romulus “that will allow us to essentially build affordable housing, apartment houses, on an assembly line.”

Encouraging entrepreneurship also was on the agenda, including representatives from Northern Initiatives, a Marquette-based small business lender serving northern and western Michigan, and 100,000 Ideas, a Flint-based entrepreneurial resources group.