Group seeks to start promise zone, free tuition for county high school graduates.

November 15, 2017

Group seeks to start promise zone, free tuition for county high school graduates.

LUDINGTON — The public is invited to the Ludington Area Center for the Arts, 107 S. Harrison St., Monday, November 27 at 2 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. for public input concerning the Mason County Promise.

A group of individuals is researching the idea of a promise type scholarship to include all of Mason County’s Michigan school systems.  

“After much research about the promise scholarships, nothing but good has resulted,” said Annette Quillan, who is helping to organize the Promise. 

Currently, there are nine Promise Zones in Michigan, including Baldwin Community School in Lake County and all schools in Muskegon County. The first Promise Zone began in the Kalamazoo Public School District in 2005.

Quillan said the Mason County Promise is open to all students who graduate from any accredited Mason County school or have a GED, are residing in Mason County, and have been students four years or more in an accredited Mason County school district; enrollment and residency must be continuous.

The Promise will be a “last dollar scholarship” and its purpose is to provide each Mason County high school student who has attained a diploma or a GED, the opportunity to attend West Shore Community College, to start on education for a skilled trade or an associated degree program.

This scholarship program provides up to two years of tuition to West Shore Community College and mandatory fees for post-secondary education (per graduated scale.),” Quillan said. “The students must be a full-time student, taking 12 credit hours per semester minimum. Individual summer school classes will be covered as long as the class applies toward the degree or certification program in which the student is enrolled. A summer school request form must be completed and approved in order to take summer classes. The scholarship may only be used at one school a semester, all summer sessions are considered one semester.”

Currently, Mason County Promise has no funds.

“We are scratching our heads,” Quillan said. “We would like sustainable funding.”

For further information call Quillan at 231-690-7670.