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Labor and Economic Opportunity

Michigan College/University Partnership (MICUP) Program


The Michigan College/University Partnership (MICUP) Program was created by the Michigan State Legislature in 1988 as part of the larger King-Chávez-Parks (KCP) Initiative.  The legislative intent is to increase the graduation rate of academically and/or economically disadvantaged students who transfer from community colleges to baccalaureate programs.

The MICUP Program provides seed money that will serve as a catalyst for institutional change, stimulating more coordinated efforts within institutions, permanently ensuring measurable short- and long-term improvement in academically and/or economically disadvantaged students' completion of baccalaureate degrees.

The strategies that are used to effectively impact student transfer, and encourage students to persevere to baccalaureate completion, vary greatly from institution to institution.  Many Michigan institutions have developed programs of “best practice” that are very effective in reaching disadvantaged students and implementing systemic institutional change.  Lessons learned over the years include: 

  • the importance of a commitment to the program at the president’s level, which increases the likelihood that institutional barriers can be overcome,
  • programs that address change in institutional systems have longer-lasting impact, and
  • programs that encourage faculty involvement are critical to improving students’ persistence to baccalaureate completion.

The Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity-Workforce Development’s (LEO-WD) King-Chávez-Parks Initiative provides oversight to the MICUP Program and technical assistance to the institutions.  MICUP Team Leaders and their colleagues at the college/university level are invited, and encouraged, to attend other KCP Initiative-sponsored activities such as the annual “Equity Within the Classroom” conference.  Also, the KCP Initiative annually hosts a statewide meeting for MICUP Program Teams to provide an opportunity for programs to exchange information on successful program practices, keep abreast of educational reform, and provide useful suggestions to improve program outcomes.