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Whitmer Kicks Off Tuition Giveaway to Celebrate Anniversary of Michigan Education Trust

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE          

May 26, 2022

Contact: Press@michigan.gov

        

Gov. Whitmer Kicks Off $1.5 Million Tuition Giveaway to Celebrate 35th Anniversary of Michigan Education Trust 
100 Michigan children to benefit from $15,000 in prepaid tuition 

LANSING, Mich. — In celebration of the Michigan Education Trust’s (MET) 35-year anniversary, Governor Gretchen Whitmer today announced the launch of the MET 35th Anniversary $1.5 Million Giveaway, a random, statewide drawing that friends and family can enter on behalf of a child for a chance to win one of 100 $15,000 prepaid tuition prizes. 

The governor was joined by former Governor Jim Blanchard, State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks, former state Sen. William Sederburg, Lansing School District Superintendent Ben Shuldiner, and teachers, students, parents and community leaders at Riddle Elementary School. 

“This life-changing giveaway is an awesome way to celebrate 35 years of helping Michigan families save for higher education,” said Governor Whitmer. It will help more students attain the education and skills they will need to achieve their career goals and bring us closer to meeting our goal of 60% of working-age adults with a skill certificate or college degree by 2030. I applaud Treasurer Eubanks and the MET Board for making this opportunity possible, and I especially want to thank Governor Blanchard for his leadership and long-term vision that have left a remarkable legacy. I would encourage any family thinking about saving for higher education to look into MET — as my parents did for me — and start today.”

Under MET’s giveaway, Michigan residents 18 years or older on Aug. 31, 2022, are eligible to enter on behalf of beneficiaries ages birth to 5 by the same date for a chance to win $15,000 in prepaid tuition. A person may enter only once, but multiple people may enter on behalf of the same child. The prepaid tuition prize may be used to pay for future tuition and mandatory fees at a community college, college, university or trade school in accordance with MET terms and conditions. 

A lot has changed over the past 35 years, but one thing still holds true today — a family’s desire to help put their children on the path to a bright and successful future,” said former Governor Blanchard, who proposed the MET plan in his State of the State address in 1986 and signed it into law later that year. Back then, parents and grandparents didn’t have a lot of options to save for a child’s higher education. We created MET, and it has been a key that has helped unlock opportunities for tens of thousands of Michiganders to receive the education, training and skills that lead to better jobs, social mobility and economic security. I’m proud of the lasting impact MET has had on so many.”

The giveaway is not being funded by state tax dollars. A prudent investment strategy over the last decade has resulted in a record surplus for MET, which can now be used to invest in Michiganders. Earlier this year, the MET Board of Directors unanimously agreed to use a portion of the surplus to elevate awareness of MET and provide more Michigan children with access to higher education that will help them prepare to compete in a modern workforce and solve future challenges.

“The idea behind the giveaway is to help make 100 dreams come true by reaching more families and helping more children achieve success through higher education,” said Treasurer Eubanks, who also serves on the MET Board. “We are excited to shine a $1.5 million spotlight on MET and show parents, grandparents and others how it’s a safe, secure and flexible way to make sure their loved ones meet their future education and career goals.”

Giveaway entry begins today (May 26) and ends on Aug. 31, 2022. Winners will be announced in a series of drawings beginning Sept. 12. Michiganders can enter the giveaway and review rules and eligibility criteria at www.METgiveaway.com.  

As the only school district in Michigan that offers free pre-K to all students living within our boundaries regardless of family income, the Lansing School District is committed to enriching our young learners by building a strong foundation for lifelong curiosity and well-being,” said Lansing School District Superintendent Ben Shuldiner. “But that foundation is just one part of the equation. Pursuing higher education can be financially unattainable for many students. MET is a great resource to help families save for future higher education even if it’s just in small increments a little bit at a time. This giveaway can help provide a child with a $15,000 head start toward his or her future. I strongly urge families in Lansing and across the state to enter.”

About the Michigan Education Trust

Administered by the Michigan Department of Treasury, MET lets families pay today’s prices for future higher education costs. Signed into law in December 1986, it was the first prepaid tuition program in the nation.

More than 96% of high school graduates participating in MET have attended a college, university or technical school.

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 chooses to attend trade school or 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 qualified higher education expenses.

More information about MET, including one-on-one consultation sessions with MET experts, is available at SETwithMET.com, 800-MET-4-KID or treasMET@Michigan.gov.

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