Having problems keeping up with PACE
Kenisha Vann, a student who is currently attending MATC's Downtown Milwaukee Campus, has plans to register for a Paralegal associate degree course after she completes the crossover program. Kenisha states, "Being on a fixed income and having to pay for public transportation is a strain on my income." She was happy when she learned that a program called The New Partners Advancing Career Employment (PACE) is located at the MATC Downtown Milwaukee Campus, which offers free transportation.
"The PACE program is fairly new," states Michael Peppers during an interview with the MATC Times. Peppers is the case manager of the PACE program. Peppers said, "Many people get the U-Pass mixed up with the PACE program."
He clarified the difference by telling the MATC Times that "the U-Pass is a school initiative to help students with transportation, while PACE is a program to help students who are currently receiving food stamps with transportation, childcare and employment placement."
During the summer, the PACE program also offers classes which students can become certified in to help them become employed. The PACE program also offers students academic support by giving them direction on who to see when they are having problems with school work. This is what Peppers does as a case manager.
Peppers suggest that students who lose their U-Pass refer to Mr. Graham instead of PACE if possible because he states, "PACE is a viable program that offers many services other than bus passes and wants to stand out for those reasons." Some of the other services offered by PACE are short-term training and Blackboard.
"Although most of the students who are participating in the PACE program right now are those who came via the Milwaukee County Employment Center, any student enrolled at MATC and currently receiving food stamps should be eligible," said Peppers.
There are two steps to registering. First, the student must enroll with Milwaukee County employee Steve Lamars by calling 414-297-8239, or visit the PACE office at the Downtown Milwaukee Campus, Technology and Applied Sciences Building, at 1101 N. 6th St., Room T140. Lamars will process the student's information into the Milwaukee County's database to verify it for approval.
Second, once the student is approved, the PACE office will provide the student with a bus pass or tickets based on the student's needs.
Peppers states there have been very few problems with students and the Milwaukee County Human Services Department since the start of the program. Peppers also states "any student who has problems with the county as a result of an error should contact the County. Pace also has a community advocate in on Tuesdays to help students with problems in their cases."
Peppers is hopeful the PACE program will be expanding with more services to offer MATC's students.
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