As the nation’s educational inequality gap increases, amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become increasingly challenging for many colleges to engage in student outreach that is not in-person. This leaves many students, specifically those from rural communities, home-schooled students, and those from densely populated urban areas, without the opportunity to truly create and explore their options post high school. To address this challenge, the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) at the University of Michigan has launched a new statewide initiative called Intend to Attend.

Intend to Attend (I2A) is an online college prep tool platform designed to provide eighth-12th grade students the necessary resources and information as they pursue their postsecondary education. Students throughout Michigan can utilize I2A to explore all of their college options, including four-year universities, community colleges, and vocational schools. The initiative is led by LSA Student Recruitment, in partnership with U-M’s Center for Educational Outreach, Wolverine Pathways, the Michigan College Advising Corps, and the U-M Center for Academic Innovation. 

I2A collaborates with other campus and community partners across the state of Michigan to create a toolkit that offers a digital coaching system, a gameful learning environment, and a host of learning opportunities. The initiative aims to provide thousands of students, including first-generation college students, students from low-income backgrounds, and underrepresented students, a personalized and meaningful avenue for college and postsecondary preparation.

“LSA has a long history of student outreach in Michigan. Intend to Attend expands those efforts on a broader and more diverse scale,” said Tim McKay, associate dean of undergraduate education at LSA. “Not attending a four-year university should not be the barrier to success. Intend to Attend is simply another way students can explore all of their options.”

“It fully aligns with our mission and values to offer Intend to Attend as a resource for the next generation of learners and leaders. As a liberal arts college, we have to be the impact we want to see, and that begins with leading the charge for systemic change,” said Anne Curzan, dean of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts at the University of Michigan. “This initiative takes an inclusive approach to meet students’ needs so they can become the next generation of leaders for the state of Michigan and the world.”

To learn more about Intend to Attend, visit the website.