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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.

More women in STEM fields at independent institutions

women in stem

In 2016, approximately 60,000 bachelor's degrees were awarded by four-year colleges and universities in Michigan. At both public and private, nonprofit institutions, about 35 percent of these degrees are in STEM fields including mathematics, biology, engineering, health sciences, physical sciences, and computer sciences.

While the share of overall STEM degrees awarded is the same for both public and private institutions, the share of those degrees earned by women is dramatically different.

Bachelor's degree: 11:1 return on investment in just five years

BA vs. car

Earning a college degree is a long-term financial investment that also provides benefits in the short-term. 

Income trajectories are strong for those with at least a bachelor’s degree compared to those who do not have one. Typical starting earnings in the U.S. for someone with a bachelor’s degree hover around $33,000 annually and this average grows each year a person with a degree is working and gaining more experience.


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