Michigan Community College Association to Address Student Economic Instability

The Michigan Community College Association (MCCA) is launching an initiative next month to improve student completion and success by addressing economic instability.

Through Michigan-Building Economic Stability Today (MI-BEST), the association will address students’ insecurity of basic needs, including access to food, housing, transportation, and child care. children.

The initiative is funded by a $442,000 grant from the ECMC Foundation which will support the initiative until June 2022.

The statewide initiative will be led by the Michigan Center for Student Success, which is part of MCCA. The center will partner with various leading organizations, including the National Center for Inquiry and Improvement and Trellis Research, as well as state organizations such as the Michigan Association of United Ways, MiBridges and Public Policy Associates to support participating community colleges in Michigan.

Liz Orbits, Dean of Student Support Services at Washtenaw Community College, which is one of the participating colleges, said, “This initiative aligns with our current work in the Student Resource Center case management model, the insecurity, our Student Emergency Fund and the WCC Student Critical Basic Needs Response. This is a unique opportunity for the WCC to participate in important work and expand our efforts to break down barriers to student success. »

Nationally, about half of two- and four-year-old students are food insecure. A similar report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that 30% of university students today suffer from food insecurity.

About 46% of students at two-year community colleges and 36% at four-year colleges experienced some degree of housing insecurity in the past year, according to a survey conducted by the Wisconsin HOPE Lab.

Students of color, especially black students and older students, are most likely to experience food and housing insecurity.

CUNY receives $1 million to fight student hunger on campus