C2 Pipeline receives more than $1 million grant to expand services for local high school students and families

The Wayne State University College of Nursing C2 Pipeline Program has been awarded a $1,091,040 grant from the Michigan Department of Lifelong Education, Advancement, and Potential as part $50 million funding package aimed at expanding access to affordable before, after and summer school opportunities for students across the state.

C2 Pipeline students at Southfield A&T High School

Operating in 15 Metro Detroit high schools and serving 1,600 students per day, C2 Pipeline uses hands-on, project-based learning activities in science, technology, engineering and math to engage students with a focus on college and career readiness, particularly in the S.T.E.M. and health care professions. The grant funding will be used to provide transportation services to students at C2’s partner schools each day after school and throughout the summer, making the program’s on- and off-campus programming more accessible.


“Transportation is a significant barrier to out of school time programming, particularly for us and especially in the winter months,” said C2 Pipeline Project Director Don Neal. “Transportation costs have increased dramatically since the pandemic, so this grant is a huge benefit for us and our students. This funding helps remove barriers to make our program more accessible while ensuring that our students are safe and get the support they need.”

C2 Pipeline data shows a decrease in program participation over the last two years in certain schools, and Neal notes that a lack of transportation options is a contributing factor.

“Looking at data from our last two years of programming, our participant numbers in these schools have decreased partly because we do not offer transportation home,” Neal explained. “We’ve seen a reduction in students who walk, ride the bus and have someone pick them up. This transition in numbers all can be attributed to our inability to provide transportation to students after our program due to a lack of funding.”


According to research conducted by the Afterschool Alliance and cited in a press release from Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announcing the grants, more than 751,000 children in Michigan lack access to out of school time programming. The Michigan Afterschool Partnership also found that there is a disproportionate undersupply of out of school time providers in Michigan’s predominately Black and low-income communities.

“C2 Pipeline is a tremendous asset to students and families throughout our region, and I’m thrilled they will be able to enhance their services and provide additional benefits to these students and families with this funding,” said Acting Dean of the WSU College of Nursing Ramona Benkert, PhD, ANP-­BC, FAANP. “Their community-engaged work is an important extension of our mission as a college and the broader mission of Wayne State University.”

About C2 Pipeline

C2 Pipeline is a program sponsored by Wayne State University's College of Nursing and funded through the Michigan Department of Education's 21st Century Community Learning Center. The program focuses on increasing graduation rates, improving academics, and helping to ensure students are college and career ready. It currently operates in 15 Metro Detroit high schools, serving grades 9 through 12. C2 Pipeline consists of three main components: 15 afterschool programming centers, annual summer programs, and the Innovation & Curiosity Center.

About the Wayne State University College of Nursing

Recognized as a leader in nursing education, knowledge generation and contemporary nursing practice, the Wayne State University College of Nursing has been dedicated to providing the highest quality education to a diverse population of students since its founding in 1945. Through its BSN, MSN, PhD, DNP and graduate certificate programs, the college prepares graduates to be leaders in research, education and practice, with an enhanced focus on addressing health disparities and the health care needs of urban populations. U.S. News and World Report has recognized the WSU College of Nursing for offering BSN, MSN and DNP programs that are ranked among the best in the country. The Nursing Practice Corporation, the college's faculty practice plan, operates the university's Campus Health Center and the Taylor Street Primary Care Clinic, located in Detroit's Virginia Park Community.


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