November 28, 2008: The Detroit College Promise, a nonprofit organization emulating the Kalamazoo Promise, began accepting applications for college tuition scholarships from seniors at Frank Cody High School in Detroit on 1 December 2008—this is a pilot program which will be expanded to other high schools that are part of the Detroit Public Schools (DPS) as funds are available.
The Detroit College Promise is offering scholarships to all 260 (approximately) current Cody seniors who meet its scholarship criteria: (a) graduate from Cody in 2009, (b) have attended DPS continuously during the 4 years prior to graduation, (c) were Detroit residents continuously during the 4 years prior to graduation, and (d) are accepted to a Michigan public college or university.
There are no income, academic, or other requirements. The application form, available online at www.DetroitCollegePromise.org on the Documents page, is a simple one page form, to encourage all students to apply.
The scholarship will pay from 65% to 100% of tuition and mandatory fees at a Michigan public college or university, based on the number of years of continuous DPS attendance and Detroit residency prior to graduation. Although The Detroit College Promise does not currently have sufficient funds to pay the scholarship costs for all Cody seniors, it hopes to raise these funds by spring 2009.
Dr. Nat Pernick, Executive Director, indicated that this program will improve the nationwide perception of Detroit . “By supporting The Detroit College Promise, Detroit-area businesses, nonprofits and individuals will show the nation that we are innovators. Kalamazoo created one of the first city-wide scholarship programs, and Detroit will be one of the largest cities with this type of program.”
The Detroit College Promise is also likely to have a dramatic economic impact on Detroit and the region. The Kalamazoo Promise has led to widespread positive publicity, new subdivisions, and increased property values as people moved into Kalamazoo.
As young people with college aspirations for their children move into Detroit, there will be a similar effect, as well as a need for new businesses. The Detroit College Promise is also likely to increase public school enrollment.
The Kalamazoo Promise not only halted years of declining public school enrollment in Kalamazoo, but quickly led to a 10% increase.
For further information, please contact Dr. Nat Pernick at 248/646-3269 or [email protected].