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March 2013

ASTRONGERNATION The Fremont Area Community Foundation has adopted a simple but ambitious goal: to increase the proportion of Newaygo County residents with high-quality college degrees, certificates, or other credentials to 60 percent by 2025.

Goal 2025 a simple but ambitious goal In the fall of 2011, the Fremont Area Community Foundation (FACF), adopted a simple but ambitious goal: to increase the proportion of Newaygo County residents with high-quality college degrees, certificates, or other credentials to 60 percent by 2025. This goal—Goal 2025—was launched nationally by the Lumina Foundation and has been adopted by the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN) and WE CAN! Newaygo County, our local college and career access network. According to Lynne Robinson, FACF Board Trustee and chair of the education committee, Goal 2025 forms the basis for the community foundation’s education initiative.

“Sixty percent attainment is a lofty goal but a vital one,” she said. “In the next two decades, it will be increasingly necessary for Newaygo County residents to have some kind of education or training beyond high school. That’s why the community foundation is focusing our education initiative on Goal 2025.”

County adults (age 25-64) hold at least a two-year degree.

Robinson’s statements are supported by data reported by Lumina in 2010. Data shows that by 2018, Michigan will need to fill 1.3 million job vacancies resulting from job creation, worker retirements, and other factors. 62 percent of these jobs, approximately 836,000, will require postsecondary credentials.

“The community foundation has set intentional, specific, and measurable goals in our strategic framework and education initiative,” she said. “In so doing, we want to communicate our sense of commitment and urgency. Meeting Goal 2025 won’t be a quick or easy process, but the data makes it clear that our economic future depends on it.”

Lumina’s report also showed that only 22.3 percent of Newaygo

As state and local college access networks and the community foundation work towards Goal 2025, Carla Roberts, FACF President and CEO, sees the goal as a rallying point for the entire community.


2012 Fall Speaker Series

foundation launches education initiative In the fall of 2012, the community foundation restructured its annual Fall Lecture Series to focus on education and launch the community foundation's Education Initiative. The Education Initiative was created to promote and sustain a continuum of effective educational systems in Newaygo County. The driving force of the initiative is Goal 2025: to increase the proportion of Newaygo County residents with high-quality college degrees, certificates, or other credentials to 60 percent by 2025.

Josh Shipp Teen expert, author, and TV show host, conducted a three-day speaking tour that reached nearly every high school student in Newaygo County. He capped off the tour with a book signing at the FACF Career and College Night Out. The event shattered attendance records, drawing over 900 students and parents.

From October to November, the Fall Lecture Series brought in four speakers designed to reach four groups vital to the success of Goal 2025: students and parents, philanthropists, business leaders, and educators. “The initial rollout of our Education Initiative required the involvement of these groups,” said Carla Roberts, President and CEO. “We identified appropriate speakers for all four target groups and either worked them in to an existing annual event or created a new event. The lecture series was designed to publicize the importance of postsecondary attainment and introduce the community to our efforts.”

Haley Glover Director of Convening Strategy at the Lumina Foundation, spoke to over 60 attendees at the FACF annual Women in Philanthropy Luncheon. Glover’s message focused on educational statistics and community development.

The series brought four high-profile speakers to Newaygo County: Josh Shipp (students and parents), Haley Glover (philanthropists), Birgit Klohs (business leaders), and Dr. Jon Twing (educators). Roberts said that now that the series is over, the real work has just begun.

Birgit Klohs

“This series launched our Education Initiative and Goal 2025 efforts, but now it is time to roll up our sleeves,” she said. “Ultimately the needle of postsecondary attainment won’t be moved forward by our foundation alone. We are partnering with countless organizations to raise awareness and provide resources for our residents.”

President and CEO of The Right Place, talked to 60 members of the Newaygo County business community about the changing workforce needs in Michigan.


Dr. Jon Twing Executive Vice President and Chief Measurement Officer at Pearson Education, presented at the annual meeting of the Newaygo County Association of School Boards. Twing discussed classroom technology, student assessment testing, and the road to college readiness.

Career and College Access Endowment Fund WE CAN! Newaygo County, our county’s career and college access network, and the community foundation are working together to remove barriers to success by focusing on career and college readiness. WE CAN! utilizes a holistic approach that begins with early childhood and leads to career success. This partnership brings together strengths of local organizations and individuals across sectors, including higher education, preschool-12 school districts, government, business, philanthropy, nonprofits, the foundation, and you! The Career and College Access Endowment Fund was created in 2012 to support and sustain the work of WE CAN! into the future. The Kresge Foundation will match contributions to this fund (up to $50,000) if, and only if, the total community contribution reaches $50,000. Check out page four for more information about the Kresge Challenge!

Ideas for Giving The Fremont Area Community Foundation has a number of other ways for you to support WE CAN! Newaygo County:

Make a lifetime gift of cash, stock, or other assets so you can experience the joy of giving to the future of your community.

Arrange a planned gift through your will or estate, using retirement funds or through the beneficiary designation of an insurance policy.

I gave to Career and College Access

why it’s worth supporting education in Newaygo County Don Bont made a lead gift of $10,000 to the community foundation’s Career and College Access Endowment Fund. Bont is the retired Director of the Newaygo County Career-Tech Center, where he worked for 32 years. He also served as the FACF board chair from 1996 to 2003.     Bont believes that it is vitally important to support the work of WE CAN! Newaygo County. He said, “It is more important today than any past decade for students to be qualified for the twenty-first-century work force with high levels of talent and skills. A four-year liberal arts education is not required of everyone, but students should obtain a credential or degree from a postsecondary technical, vocational, or college institution.” 

Wesley Miller, like 100 percent of the community foundation's staff members made a personal financial contribution to the Career and College Access Endowment Fund in 2012. Miller is a FACF Program Officer and a 2004 graduate of Hesperia High School.    Miller's donation displays the sense of personal buy-in within the community foundation's board and staff. He said, "I believe that career and college access is a great strategy to improve the quality of life for people in Newaygo County. Postsecondary attainment not only lowers unemployment rates and increases salaries, but it also leads to a more engaged community through increased volunteerism and voter participation."




4424 W. 48th St. • PO Box B Fremont, MI 49412

$50,000 Matching Grant Opportunity

give generously to the Kresge Challenge Campaign You may be asking, "How can I support college and career access in Newaygo County?" The Kresge Foundation Challenge provides a way. The community foundation has been awarded a very special $50,000 matching grant by the Council of Michigan Foundations. Gifts to the Career and College Access Endowment Fund will be matched by The Kresge Foundation up to $50,000 if, and only if, the total community contribution reaches $50,000 by December 31, 2013. The Career and College Access Endowment Fund will support and sustain our local college access network and its efforts to turn career and college possibilities into realities. Please consider making a tax-deductible gift to support career and college access in Newaygo County. We can work with you to design a giving opportunity that is tailored to your goals for education and your financial preferences. Together, with the work of WE CAN! Newaygo County, we can achieve the greatest, most long-lasting impact possible. Contributions to the College and Career Access Network Fund can be mailed to the community foundation or submitted online by clicking the "Donate" button at


4424 W. 48th St. • Fremont, MI 49412 P 231.924.5350 • F 231.924.5391

To learn more about the Kresge Challenge Campaign or Goal 2025, contact Bob Jordan, Vice President of Philanthropic Services at (231) 924-5350 or

FACF Education Initiative Newsletter  
FACF Education Initiative Newsletter  

In the fall of 2011, Fremont Area Community Foundation (FACF), adopted a simple but ambitious goal: to increase the proportion of Newaygo Co...