Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce More than $3 Million to Help West Michigan Students Graduate from College

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Michigan Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters today announced more than $3 million to give West Michigan students, many of whom are the first in their family to go to college, coaching and skill development so they have a better shot at graduating college. This support through the Department of Education's TRIO Student Support Services Program will benefit eligible students at eight West Michigan colleges.

"Students who work hard and are accepted to college deserve every opportunity to succeed," said Senator Stabenow. "Thanks to today's announcement, more college students across West Michigan will get tutoring, financial aid counseling, and other support they need to finish school."

"Whether it's improving academic support services or increasing financial resources, this support from the Department of Education will bolster efforts to retain and graduate more students in Western Michigan," Senator Peters said. "Higher education increases economic opportunity and provides a pathway to the middle class, and putting the dream of completing a higher education degree within reach for more Michigan students is critical."

The eight colleges chosen in West Michigan are among more than 20 chosen in Michigan this year to receive support like tutoring and financial aid planning assistance through the TRIO Student Support Services Program, which helps low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities graduate college. A full list of projects can be found here.

Senator Stabenow is a strong supporter of making sure that all students who work hard to get into college are given tools and resources to succeed. In April, Senator Stabenow introduced the Early Pell Promise Act, which guarantees two years of Pell Grants for qualifying middle school students to help boost college enrollment and college completion rates.

Increasing higher education access and affordability for all Michiganders is a top priority for Senator Peters. Senator Peters introduced the bipartisan FAIR Student Credit Act to help private student loan borrowers rehabilitate defaulted loans and remove the default from their credit report after making a series of on-time payments. Earlier this year, he also helped introduce the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, legislation to allow borrowers with outstanding student loan debt to refinance at lower interest rates available to new borrowers.

Below is a list of West Michigan recipients:

Southwestern Michigan College - $291,977
Aquinas College - 291,977
Lake Michigan College - $281,489
Glen Oaks Community College - $220,000
Kellogg Community College - $352,826
Grand Rapids Community College - $387,564
Western Michigan University - $284,754
Western Michigan University - $220,000 for Teacher Preparation
Grand Valley State University - $312,674
Grand Valley State University - $220,000 for Teacher Preparation
Grand Valley State University - $220,000 for support for student pursuing STEM majors