Cristian Rodriguez is in his first year at Mott Community College, where he’s working on general education and business credits with plans to pursue a degree in finance. When he’s not in class or studying, he can be found working in the college’s financial aid office and spending time with his friends in TMOT (Talented Men of Today).
A highlight of his college experience thus far? He’s not worried about student loans.
That’s because Rodriguez is a recipient of the Flint Promise scholarship, which is designed for Flint residents who graduate or earn a GED from a high school located in the city. The scholarship covers up to 100 percent of a student’s tuition and book fees after federal grants and other scholarships are applied.
According to Rodriguez, it feels as though a weight has been lifted off his shoulders.
“I can focus on school,” says Rodriguez. “And when I graduate, I won’t have to worry about paying off any loans – I can just focus on my career. That’s huge.”
Flint Promise first launched in 2018 and currently has more than 70 students enrolled in its scholarship program. And as everyone gears up for the 2019-20 school year, the program is expanding its collegiate partnerships to include four-year pathways at both Kettering University and the University of Michigan-Flint.
Students can also use the scholarship at Mott Community College for up to three academic years as a student pursues a certificate, associate degree or transfer certificate.
“We’re fortunate to have three outstanding undergraduate schools right in our own backyard,” says James Avery, director of Education & Training at the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce, which administers the scholarship program. “And we’re proud to partner with each of them to make college more accessible for Flint students.”
According to Avery, the scholarship program goes beyond financial support. In fact, each Flint Promise student receives academic and personal support throughout his or her college career.
To meet the scholarship’s eligibility requirements, applicants must:
Flint Promise was established through $2 million in combined gifts from the Consumers Energy Foundation and Tom Gores, Founder of FlintNOW, and is housed at the Community Foundation of Greater Flint and administered by the Flint & Genesee Chamber.
For more information or to apply, visit theflintpromise.org. Applications for the fall semester are due July 15, 2019.