Blue Water College Access Network

St. Clair County's College Resource | September 2021

College Knowledge for EVERYONE

Welcome to your resource for planning, preparing, and going to college after high school. Blue Water College Access Network is here to provide information and opportunities that will ensure you graduate confidently prepared, with plans for career and college beyond high school. Whether you choose to go on to earn a bachelor's degree, an associate degree, or an industry credential, we can help you get there!

Each month, we will publish a newsletter to keep you on track, informed, and engaged in college activities provided by organizations across the county. To subscribe to the newsletter, submit your email address using this form. Past editions of the newsletter can be found at Contact Nick Beaudry with any questions you might have at

Our College Stories

How do you plan, prepare, and pay for college? Local grads will tell you how!

Beginning this month, St. Clair County graduates will share their personal college-going stories, along with tips for getting to and going through college, including candid details of the ups and downs along the way. Meet local grads with very different stories to tell of how they each made it to college - through poverty, divorce, challenging academics, and more. Be sure to follow @BlueWaterCAN on Facebook and Twitter for the latest college story as it's shared.

In this month's newsletter, we introduce Lizzie Ling and listen to grads share the reasons they chose to go to college.

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Lizzie Ling's College Story
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How did you pay for college?

Fall Webinar Series

The Webinar series kicks off at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 30 with ‘Senior Year Planning.' Register by scanning the QR Code on the flyer or visiting


September is College Savings Month

To raise awareness of college savings plans, September has been deemed College Savings Month in Michigan. Here are some resources to help you learn about 529 savings plans:


Administered by the Michigan Department of Treasury, MET is the state’s prepaid education savings program that lets users pay today’s prices for future education costs. Signed into law in 1986, it was the first prepaid education savings program in the nation.

There are three types of MET plans: the full benefits plan, the limited benefits plan and the community college plan. Families can purchase one plan or mix and match options.

MET benefits can be used for postsecondary education at universities, colleges and technical schools. If a child chooses to attend a private Michigan school or out-of-state college or university, funds can be directed to that institution. MET benefits may also be transferred to other eligible family members and are refundable if the student does not attend college.

Parents, grandparents or other family and friends can make MET contributions on behalf of beneficiaries. MET has flexible and convenient payment options that allow purchasers to pay as they go, pay all at once or make monthly payments.

Contributions to MET plans are tax deductible on Michigan tax returns. Earnings are tax exempt if they are used for higher education tuition and mandatory fees.

The current enrollment period for MET will end Sept. 30 and reopen in December. MET closes enrollment each fall for administrators to review pricing. Families who make a MET purchase this month – as well as those who wait until December when enrollment reopens – will qualify for a deduction on their 2021 Michigan tax returns.

More information about MET, including one-on-one concierge service sessions with MET experts, is available at, 800-MET-4-KID or

Colleges with Free Applications 2021-22

The Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) has compiled a list of Michigan colleges with no application fee during the 2021-22 school year. In addition, they have a list of colleges with no fee during Michigan College Month in October 2021.
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Schedule a visit or tour at SC4

St. Clair County Community College is excited to schedule admissions visits and tours for the 21/22 school year! If you would like to schedule a time for our team to share information with your students about SC4 please email our Admissions office at or call us at 810-989-5571. We look forward to talking with you!

Late-start classes are still available

Seats are still available in 12-week classes starting the week of Monday, Sept. 20, and eight-week classes starting the week of Monday, Oct. 18. Classes are available on-campus and online.

Late-start classes allow students to earn credits at a faster pace. More than 85 sections are available for classes in topics which include biology, business, English, history, math, political science, psychology, sociology and more.

Examples of specific courses offered this fall include:

  • BUS 155-60 — Business Management
  • BUS 186-60 — Internet Marketing
  • BIO 101-65 — Essentials of Biology
  • BIO 271-65 — Human Anatomy & Physiology
  • ECON 222-61 — Principles of Microeconomics
  • ETW 170-04 — Print Reading/Fab Design
  • MTH 104-63 — Foundations of Math
  • HE 101-69 — Math Related to Drug Admin
  • HE 102-65 — Medical Terminology
  • HIS 101-65 — History of Western Civilization to 1715
  • PS 101-66 — Introduction to Political Science
  • PSY 260-02 — Abnormal Psychology

Current students can search for all courses and sections at They can register and pay for classes online in the SC4 Portal at

For more information, contact Enrollment Services at or (810) 989-5500.

College Advisers Needed to Make a Difference

Life after graduation is a journey. As you are discovering the next step on your professional and personal journey, you know that finding opportunities means tapping into your networks and being resourceful.

We, together with our partners at the AdviseMI program, have an opportunity for you!

AdviseMI offers the opportunity to serve directly at Port Huron Northern High School to help our students navigate the college-going process. It’s a chance to make a difference, and get paid for it, during a time when college enrollment for our students is more critical than ever. Take charge of your future by becoming an AdviseMI college adviser at Port Huron Northern today!

To learn more and apply click here:

Paying for College

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Michigan Reconnect Skills Scholarship

The Michigan Skills Scholarship program is now accepting new applicants. The scholarship provides up to $1,500 to aid in tuition coverage at a private training school or program for adults 25 years and older seeking a skills certificate.

The scholarship is part of the Michigan Reconnect program and offers certificates in five high-demand professional trade careers in industries: business management, construction, healthcare, information technology and manufacturing.

The scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis to the first 1,000 applicants who enroll with an eligible training provider.

To learn more and apply for the Skills Scholarship, visit

Career & College Exploration

Xello Tips & Tidbits

A new monthly feature of the BWCAN newsletter is a dive into Xello, the career and college planning tool that is available to St. Clair County students for free at their local schools. With Xello, students can explore pathways and update their plans for life beyond graduation. Parents who are aware of Xello can support their student's career and college planning within the application. As always, school counselors will support students from start to finish. To access Xello at home, find your school on this webpage and click to sign on.
Xello: Make Every Student Future Ready!

Counselor Corner

Each month, counselors can find current college and career counseling information and professional learning opportunities in the Counselor Corner section of the BWCAN newsletter. A running compilation of opportunities can also be found on the Counselors page at
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Xello and MCAN Professional Development Webinar Series

Michigan College Access Network is proud to partner with Xello to host a new series of professional development webinars for K-12 educators in Michigan. Together with Xello, a modern college, career, and future readiness software, we are excited to offer this opportunity to our network.

Starting in October, we will be co-hosting a free 8-part monthly webinar series that will focus on timely topics like how to address disrupted learning and how to use your limited time to best serve students applying for college. You don't need to commit to the whole series; register for the topics that fit your interests and schedule. Earn SCECHs while learning how to use Xello to meet Michigan's Career Development Program requirements and help your students build their Educational Development Plans.


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Roadmap to Opportunity: Stackable Pathways

Learn about stackable academic programs that lead to careers in high-demand fields. This webinar series features representatives from several community colleges discussing their institutions' stackable programs, while also covering the admissions process and certificate programs.
Dates: Throughout September
Times: 10-11 a.m.
SCECHs: Each webinar may be eligible for one SCECH in career exploration.

View webinar dates and register →

College Bound Michigan

Register soon for timely access to resources!

Don't forget to register for College Bound Michigan, a suite of initiatives that includes Michigan College Month, College Cash Campaign, and College Decision Day. Registrants gain access to grant opportunities, cash incentives, promotional materials, toolkits, and more.

Register for CBMI 2021-22 →

Contact Nick Beaudry, Supervisor of Career and College Programs, St. Clair County RESA

Blue Water College Access Network

For more college-going information, resources, and events, visit the BWCAN website.