Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is proposing expanding Futures for Frontliners and Michigan Reconnect – programs providing free in-district community college tuition to eligible residents — as part of a proposed $2.1 billion program to boost middle-class residents, support small businesses, and help communities.
Whitmer, speaking Tuesday in the welding lab at GRCC’s Leslie Tassell M-TEC, proposes using federal stimulus money for a $215 million expansion of the two programs, a $70 million to improve the pipeline of talented workers to industry, a $100 million influx for the Going PRO credential program, and additional programs to offer work experience to Michiganders earning their GEDs and help those reentering society after incarceration transition into the workforce.
“As we emerge from the once-in-a-century pandemic, we have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to use billions in federal resources to grow Michigan’s middle class, support small businesses, and invest in our communities,” she said.
“With the $2.1 billion in proposals I have laid out, we can raise wages, give people paths to high-skill jobs, grow start-ups, build clean energy infrastructure, and do so much more. I’m utilizing every resource and ensuring that we continue to take bold action to help families, communities and small businesses thrive. Together, we can usher in new era of prosperity for Michigan.”
Whitmer was joined by GRCC President Bill Pink, The Right Place President and CEO Randy Thelen and Susan R. Corbin, director of the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity.
Pink said the Tassell M-TEC was an appropriate place for the announcement, considering it houses training programs providing students with in-demand skills.