With college tuition creeping up each year, students look to alternative routes to earn college credits at a fraction of the cost during their high school years. Traditional paths to discounted college credits include AP and IB courses at the high school level. However, some states are experimenting with alternate funding options for college. One state is even permitting Juniors and seniors to participate in apprenticeships to earn up to $30,000 to fund their college education.
Michigan recently launched a new $2.3 million career and technical education program aimed at helping juniors and seniors stock money away for college. The program will permit some 1,000 juniors and seniors at Education Achievement Authority schools in Detroit to earn up to $30,000 each in free college credit and work at paid job apprenticeships while still in school.
The program, a partnership between the EAA, the U.S. Department of Labor, the Detroit Employment Solutions Corp., Henry Ford Community College, Wayne County Community College District and Focus: HOPE, begins in September. But students can apply immediately by contacting their schools, or they can apply at enrollment fairs to be held at the involved high schools and every EAA school from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
At a news conference Thursday announcing the program, EAA Chancellor John Covington called the move “groundbreaking.”
“This is a huge step for preparing young people for higher education and the work force,” he said. “We estimate the value at about $30,000 for each child.” He said paid apprenticeships can lead to long-term employment, though there are no job guarantees upon graduation.
“This new program will help provide 1,000 students a chance to earn college credit at no cost to them while they are still in high school and help them win paid, long-term employment in a related field of study,” he said.
The only requirements are that a student must be an 11th or 12th grader at Denby, Henry Ford, Mumford, Pershing or Southeastern high school. There is no grade point average requirement.
“We want to give every child an opportunity,” said Judith Berry, EAA assistant chancellor for instructional support and educational accountability. She said it will be first come, first served.