Eastern Michigan University will offer a program to single parents ages 18-24 to help them earn a college degree.
EMU says the "Keys to Degrees" program is open to low-income men and women each with only one child age 18 months or older when the program begins.
The program will start with availability for ten students who will live in University apartments on campus. While parents are in classes, children will be cared for on campus at EMU's Children Institute.
Because classes are conducted year-round, students could earn a college degree in three years.
In a press release, EMU's assistant vice president of retention and student success, Lynette Findley, said:
"Single parents have been historically marginalized and shut out of higher education, due, in large measure, to the expense of high quality, licensed childcare. This program is an outstanding opportunity to serve the large number of single parents in the greater metro Detroit area in order to improve quality of life for them and for their children."
There are few programs like it around the country.
The Detroit Free Press writes that EMU's program is one of seven colleges offering such benefits:
The Higher Education Alliance for Residential Single Parent Programs lists just seven colleges nationwide that have programs that house single parents and their children on campus through a targeted program. One of the seven is Endicott College, located in Beverly, a Boston suburb.
Endicott College established its program in 1992 and, with a $400,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, will partner with EMU to recreate the initiative in Michigan.
EMU and Endicott College hope to replicate the program at two more Michigan colleges.