President Obama and College Leaders at Summit to Open Up Higher Education to Low-Income Students!

Dear Commons Community,

President Obama greeted college presidents and other leaders who were invited to a White House summit to open up access to low-income students.   As reported in The Chronicle of Higher Education:

“Mr. Obama described the event as part of his administration’s broader effort to spur change in the absence of cooperation from Congress. Later this month, he will convene business leaders for a similar summit, to discuss the long-term unemployed.

“I’ve got a pen to take executive actions where Congress won’t, and I’ve got a telephone to rally folks around the country on this mission,” he said. “Today is a great example of how, without a whole bunch of legislation, we can advance this agenda.”

Commitments were categorized based on the following characteristics:

Financial aid: Commitments to increase the amount or number of grants and scholarships available to students with financial need.

Outreach: Commitments to expand outreach efforts with high schools and community colleges to increase mentoring, recruiting, and advising.

Enrollment: Commitments to increase enrollment of low-income students, including efforts to ease the transferring process from community colleges.

Technology: Commitments to expand online education programs and deliver information about the college-application process.

Remedial education: Commitments to push students to excel beyond remedial-level coursework and establish new college-readiness assessment policies.

College preparation: Commitments to prepare low-income and first-generation students for the rigor of college-level coursework with programs including “summer bridge” and dual enrollment.

STEM Focus: Commitments to place special emphasis to prepare, recruit, and fund students to take science, technology, engineering, and math classes.

Community Engagement: Commitments to ensure that students, particularly low-income, first-generation students, assimilate gracefully to college life through learning communities, first-year experiences, and placements in research and internships.


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