By NICOLE LOSEK, Arts and Entertainment Editor

The Detroit College Access Network (DCAN) is a coordinating body of cross-sector leaders and organizations in Detroit working together to make sure all Detroit students have the opportunity to attend and complete college. DCAN is a network of organizations that connect existing programs, schools, businesses and community resources to improve college enrollment and graduation rates for Detroit students. Their mission is to increase post-secondary readiness, enrollment and attainment so that all Detroit students can achieve their educational dreams.

As of this year, Get Schooled is recognized as a Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Company” in the gaming category. Get Schooled directly engages and motivates students to graduate from high school and succeed in college. They offer a range of support for low income students and engage with high schoolers by using the media, technology and pop culture.

Get Schooled has partnered with Detroit Public Schools to boost achievement since 2012. In 2014, Get Schooled led an Attendance Challenge across 37 Detroit middle and high schools. More than half of all participating schools posted attendance increases during the challenge.

DCAN and Get Schooled are non-profit organizations whose goal is to improve college access and success. They have teamed up to launch the Detroit College Challenge, funded by General Motors. The Detroit College Challenge is meant to encourage high school students to apply for college and how to prepare and pay for it.

Get Schooled Detroit is made for the city of Detroit. The website includes information to benefit 9-12 graders. The site includes information about how to apply for college, Detroit  Promise partner colleges and Detroit-specific rewards. By texting “college” to 33-55-77, students will receive college tips from Get Schooled that are specific for Detroit students. These tips include application deadlines and study reminders. Students will also be allowed to text that same number at any time to reach a credentialed college advisor that will answer any questions students might have.

Since the initial launch earlier this year, Get Schooled Detroit has had over 5,000 visits and more than 1,250 Detroit students have utilized the Get Schooled textline.

The Detroit College Challenge encourages students to get involved with Get Schooled Detroit. Once a student completes the content on Get Schooled Detroit, that student will earn points for themselves as well as their school. The schools that are most active can ‘unlock the box’ and earn a $500 grant. Top performing schools can earn a $2,500 grant. Adding competition to this has helped Get Schooled reach millions of high schoolers and drive improvement of student outcomes in schools and communities in need of a little push.

“Get Schooled has a longstanding history of working with Detroit middle and high schools and is excited to expand that work into improving Detroit college-going rates,” said Marie Groark, Executive Director of Detroit. “We are excited to partner with GM and DCAN as we deepen our work in Detroit and support educators and students alike as they strive to take advantage of the resources available through the Detroit Promise.”

To learn more about the Detroit College Challenge, or enroll a Detroit high school in the Challenge, go to www.getschooled.com/detroit.