Administration’s Budget Includes Significant Cuts for Higher Education

The information below is culled from the most recent Michigan Community Colleges Association (MCCA) weekly report.  There are significant cuts to higher education, which could negatively impact community colleges (an understatement).

Please read on….

Last Thursday, President Trump released his initial request for funding for fiscal year (FY) 2018. This ‘skinny budget’ provides some funding details and priorities of the Administration. The full budget is expected to be released in May. Ultimately, it will be up to Congressional appropriators to determine how to distribute funding for FY 2018. The Administration’s budget includes a 14% cut to the Department of Education and a 21% cut to the Department of Labor. Below is a summary of information provided in the skinny budget for higher education and workforce programs:

  • Current Pell Grant surplus is targeted with a $3.9 billion cut.
  • Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (SEOG) program is eliminated. SEOG provides aid to over 1.5 million students, a quarter of which are community college students.
  • TRIO (which includes Upward Bound) is cut by 10%, and GEAR UP is cut by 32%.
  • Budget includes unspecified but ‘significant’ cuts to Federal Work Study.
  • Funding for Title III (A) Strengthening Institutions is likely eliminated.
  • While the budget proposes $9 billion in cuts to education programs, not all of these cuts are specified. The budget notes there are 20 additional categorical programs that will be reduced or eliminated.
  • The budget includes over $2 billion in unspecified cuts to the Department of Labor, including a decrease in federal support for job-training grants, stating that states, localities, and employers should provide more funding.
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Celebrating Women Today and All Month Long

March is Women’s History Month, and today, March 8, has been designated “International Women’s Day” around the world. As we celebrate today and during the whole month of March, please join me in showing appreciation for the historical and current contributions of women all over the world.

Today was designated as “A Day without Women”, and many women could have simply stayed home. How would any organization, especially Monroe County Community College, function without women?  The answer is, it simply would not exist (but then, neither would I – thank you mom!) So on this very special day and during this entire month, year, and forever, let us continue to express our gratitude to all women on campus and beyond. Women of the Monroe County Community College family and women of the world, I say thank you for all that you have done and continue to do to make MCCC and the entire world a better place!

Happy 60th Independence Day to Ghana: A Model of Political Stability

Exactly sixty years ago, March 6, 1957, the African nation of Ghana became the first Sub-Saharan African country to gain independence from a colonial power. Since then, the country has gone through its ups and downs, and is now arguably the most stable nation in Africa.

Certainly, Ghana has  had its challenges and its fair share of military coup d’états and “dictatorships”, but it has had democratically elected governments for decades. Ghana is unique in many ways, some of which include but are not limited to:

  • Freedom of press, religion and other freedoms
  • The co-existence of Muslims and Christians in a civil society
  • No civil wars or conflicts since independence
  • Low incidents of aids
  • Civilian governments that relinquish power when they lose an election
  • More slave forts than any other nation (a dubious distinction)
  • A major tourist destination with many five star hotels

There is much more to this wonderful African nation. Happy Independence Day to Ghana!