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.