Governor Whitmer Talks To Battle Creek Students & Teachers
Governor Whitmer asked students "What are your roadblocks to higher education?" in visit to Battle Creek Central High School Monday.
Michigan's Governor along with State Representative Jim Haadsma, paid a visit to Battle Creek Central High School students, faculty and alumni on Monday to listen to students discuss their career goals as well as the barriers that may stand in their way. For some the answer comes down to not enough money or not wanting the debt associated with a higher education.
Gov. Whitmer says there is a lot being done right in Battle Creek Public Schools, when asked why she choose to come to the city. Compared to the rest of the state, students in Battle Creek are more likely to apply for Federal aid to pursue a college degree. It is estimated that nearly 25,000 Michigan students eligible for Pell grants did not file the FAFSA last year, leaving nearly $100 million in Pell grant funding unspent. Another reason Battle Creek stands out she says, students here are more likely to return to the city to peruse options to enrich and enhance the community.
The faculty told the Gov. Whitmer that they try to instill "It doesn't end here", as far as education goes, into the students. At one time in Michigan, a high school graduate could easily obtain a good paying job with one of the many automotive related industries in the state. A lot of workers could stay in one job the rest of their lives. Now teachers at Battle Creek Central say they are trying to encourage students to learn transferable skills that can be applied to every career.
Gov. Whitmer said "There's a path for everyone in our state," and that not every path is the same for each individual. In Michigan there has been a documented shortage of skilled workers. Something she hopes to address with the pending Michigan Reconnect program.
Not surprisingly the topic of a career in public office came up. Whitmer discussed how she came to work in politics with the students while State Representative Haadsma encouraged those interested to pursue opportunities in the Youth in Government Program.