Miller Canfield scholarship helps provide free classes for elected officials at UM-Dearborn's Institute for Local Government

October 29, 2009

DEARBORN / Oct. 29, 2009---The Institute for Local Government at the University of Michigan-Dearborn will be able to provide broader educational programs to civic leaders thanks to a $1,000 gift from Miller Canfield, the international law firm based in Detroit.    

“These scholarships will enable more elected officials whose budgets are so strapped to take advantage of our learning opportunities at no cost to them,” according to Dale Thomson, assistant professor of political science and director of UM-Dearborn’s Institute for Local Government (IFLG).    

Miller Canfield, known for its public finance work in the Midwest and representing many Michigan governments, has been a longtime supporter of the IFLG.  Some of the firm’s public finance lawyers sit on the IFLG advisory board and continue to lead classes and workshops.   

 “Michigan governments at all levels are facing unprecedented economic hurdles, so it’s more important than ever to collaborate with peers and discuss challenges and opportunities,” said Michael P. McGee, a Miller Canfield public finance lawyer and IFLG advisory board member and instructor. “Miller Canfield is pleased to continue to support and help grow this invaluable program with these scholarships.”    

The IFLG was founded in 2004 to help develop stronger civic leadership in the region.  The IFLG offers a range of programs for school board members, mayors, city council members and village and township trustees to help them enhance their knowledge in government finance, policy-making, leadership and other subjects critical to effective leadership from elected officials.  Classes and workshops typically range in cost from $50-$80 per session and tackle a wide range of topics including municipal/school district collaboration, campaign financings, fundamentals of planning and zoning, and being a young government leader.     

“Miller Canfield has always been a strong supporter of ours, providing a significant amount of pro bono work and time in the class room and board room,” Thomson said.  “We’ve always been grateful for the work they’ve done, and this recent gift of scholarships is a show of their support for stronger civic leadership in the region.”

The 2009-2010 class schedule is:
•    Fundamentals of Local Government: Thursday, Dec. 3
•    Essentials of Public Service:  Thursday, Dec. 10
•    Fundamentals of Planning & Zoning:  Thursday, Jan. 14
•    Fundamentals of Finance: Thursday, Jan. 21
•    Understanding Your Budget:  Thursday, Feb. 4
•    Ethics (tentative Wednesday, Jan. 13 or 20)
•    Labor Contracts/Act 312 (tentative Thursday, Feb. 25)

Elected officials interested in the scholarship opportunity should contact Susan Rowe, IFLG Program coordinator, at 313-593-5140.


About University of Michigan-Dearborn
The University of Michigan-Dearborn is celebrating its 50th anniversary throughout the 2009/2010 academic year. Founded in 1959 with a gift of just over 200 acres of land and $6.5 million from the Ford Motor Company, UM-Dearborn has been distinguished by its commitment to providing excellent educational opportunities responsive to the needs of southeastern Michigan. The university has 8,700 students pursuing undergraduate, master’s, doctoral and professional degrees in the liberal arts and sciences, engineering, business, education, and public administration. With a faculty devoted to teaching, and students committed to achievement, UM-Dearborn has been shaped by its history of interaction with business, government and industry in southeastern Michigan, and is committed to responding to the needs of the region in the future.


PHONE: 313-593-5542
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University of Michigan-Dearborn