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The State of Michigan's Futures for Frontliners logo on an orange wave.

Are you a frontline worker who’s been thinking about going back to college or finishing your high school equivalency? Well, now is the time.

Lake Michigan has partnered with Futures for Frontliners, a state scholarship program giving back to Michigan’s essential workers with tuition-free community college to anyone without a degree. The scholarship covers the cost of associate degrees, certificates and high school equivalency exams.

To be eligible, you must:

  • Be a Michigan resident
  • Have worked in an essential industry at least part-time between April and June, 2020 (must have worked during 11 weeks averaging 20 hours a week or a total of 220 hours).
  • Have not yet completed a an associate or bachelor’s degree. 
  • Have a high school diploma or equivalent. To earn your high school equivalency or GED, contact the Educational Opportunity Center. 

Next steps for new college students: 

What are essential industries?

  • Food and agriculture.
  • Health care and public health.
  • Law enforcement, public safety and first responders.
  • Communications and information technology (IT), including news media.
  • Financial services.
  • Public works.
  • Critical manufacturing.
  • Energy.
  • Water and wastewater.
  • Critical infrastructure workers.
  • Community-based government operations and essential functions.
  • Defense industrial base.
  • Hazardous materials.
  • Chemical supply chains and safety.
Sticky note that reads, "Free tuition for essential workers."


Link to the Futures for Frontliners website.

Futures for Frontliners aims to increase the number of skilled workers in the state and help essential workers earn higher wages. On average, workers with a two-year degree earn $7,500 more annually. Seventy-five percent of Michigan jobs require education beyond high school.


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