On Friday, May 11, I was honored to bring University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel to Ypsilanti High School to address a group of students, parents, administrators, and local community and faith leaders. Although the university campus is only 15 minutes away from Ypsilanti High School, Schlissel’s visit was the first by a University of Michigan president in more than 40 years.

President Schlissel was accompanied by his Vice Provost for Enrollment Management, Kedra Ishop. The pair spoke passionately about expanding opportunities for low-income and first-generation college students. President Schlissel stated that, while he was proud of the 89 students from Ypsilanti who are part of Michigan’s current population of 29,000 undergraduates, the number needs to be much higher.

Every student deserves the opportunity to pursue their dream and receive the training they need for the good-paying job they want. Access to higher education and job training programs can provide students the tools they need to create the life they want for themselves. I’m working hard in Lansing and at home to make a higher education and job training opportunities more affordable and available to our young people. I want to thank University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel, Vice Provost Kedra Ishop, Vice President Cynthia Wilbanks, Ypsilanti Community Schools Superintendent Ben Edmondson, YHS Principal Cory Gildersleeve, County Commissioner Ricky Jefferson, Ypsilanti Township Supervisor Brenda Stumbo and a host of others for making this event possible.

If you have any thoughts or concerns about our state’s higher education and job training programs, please feel free to reach out to my office.