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Bachelor's degrees awarded 2008-2017

BAs 2008-2017

Welcome to the first Independent Indicators issue of 2019! 
MICU member institutions have awarded 117,301 bachelor's degrees over the past decade (2008-2017). This represents 22 percent of the total bachelor's degrees awarded in Michigan between 2008 and 2017.

Also, with 20 percent growth in the number of degrees awarded since 2008 and a continuing strong number of awards conferred each year, Michigan's independent colleges and universities are a significant contributor to Michigan's talent needs.

Tuition falling, inflation rising

The rising cost of college and the need to control it has been a drumbeat heard consistently for the past several years in Michigan. However, the opposite is true. Real college costs in Michigan are, in fact, falling and have been for the past four years.

Whether students attend an independent, non-profit college or university or choose a public university, the average cost of attendance is falling in comparison to inflation.

Michigan needs another $400 million in need-based aid to be a "top ten" state

Higher education attainment needs to be a priority for Michigan. Nationally, states with greater numbers of individuals with a college degree or postsecondary credentials have higher incomes, less poverty, and increased economic success.

Expanding access to higher education for all learners regardless of age or ability to pay is essential for Michigan to ensure that more individuals are able to earn a degree. 

Bachelor's degrees on the rise

The number of individuals earning a bachelor's degree from an independent, non-profit college or university in Michigan has increased 32 percent to nearly 13,000 annually since 2003.

Independent, non-profit colleges and universities in Michigan are contributing talent to Michigan's economy and the numbers are on the rise. Since 2003, the number of individuals earning a bachelor's degree at an independent institution in Michigan has increased by 32 percent.

Bachelor's degree or more essential for post-recession recovery

Individuals with a bachelor's degree or higher have stronger employment rates than before the recession. Those with less than a bachelor's degree have not fully recovered.

While unemployment is at an all-time low, many individuals are still struggling. Those without a college education have still not pulled out of the recession.

Is College Worth It? Business Leaders Say 'Yes'

In a recent independent study, executives and hiring managers agreed that higher education is worth the investment of time and money. An additional question in the survey asked about the overall importance of a degree to someone's career.

Strong majorities of executives and hiring managers noted that it is either very important or absolutely essential for individuals today to complete a college education.


Complete research results and the report can be found here.

Independent Indicators Year-In-Review 2017

During 2017, MICU began producing bi-weekly infographics to share data related to independent, non-profit higher education in Michigan. During our year-long analysis we found out that independent, non-profit colleges in Michigan provide incredible access and opportunity for their students while also making college affordable. 

Please contact Colby Cesaro at MICU if you would like a hard copy of this report. ccesaro@micolleges.org

Student Scholarships and Grants Information for Aid Administrators

Information for Aid Administrators about state aid programs including the Michigan Tuition Grant and Tuition Incentive Program can be found through MI Student Aid/Student Scholarships and Grants (SSG) within the Michigan Department of Treasury.

Messages to Aid Administrators

SSG Programs 

Investment Comparison: College versus Car?

College vs. Car

U.S. Auto Loan Amounts Outpace Student Debt, But Fail to Deliver Similar Long-Term Value for Americans

Asset Values, Costs Vary Widely Over Short, Long Term

Michigan’s Independent Colleges and Universities (MICU) today released its comparison of U.S. automotive debt to student loan debt, and the results are striking.

Michigan's independent colleges & universities enroll a growing number of Pell Grant recipients

pell over time

Pell Grants are federal need-based student grants that help students with financial need pay for college. The share of students with Pell Grants is typically an indicator of how accessible an institution is for students from a diverse array of family income situations.

As the economic landscape of Michigan has shifted, a greater number of students are in-need of aid. Independent colleges and universities have responded to student needs and are accessible to students of all income levels.


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