On Wednesday, 13 national organizations representing students, colleges, consumers, college administrators, and others sent a letter to Congressional leaders calling for a major investment in college affordability. The groups put forward specific proposals for short-term, targeted assistance to students and parents to boost college access, create jobs, reduce student borrowing, and strengthen the American workforce and economy.
The letter says, in part:
Post-secondary education and training have never been so critical to the future of America's families, economy, and society. Yet rising unemployment, collapsing home values, and a plummeting stock market have made it harder than ever for working families to cover college costs.
The letter (PDF) is signed by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, Campus Progress, Dēmos, the Institute for Higher Education Policy, the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators, the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, the National Consumer Law Center, the National Consumers League, State Higher Education Executive Officers, the Project on Student Debt, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, and the United States Students Association.
The groups propose a two-year student aid stimulus package with four main components, all of which could be accomplished within existing administrative structures so that funds can reach their intended beneficiaries quickly.
Read the letter (PDF).
The Project on Student Debt is supported by The Pew Charitable Trusts, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the BayTree Fund, and individual donors. The Project on Student Debt is an initiative of the Institute for College Access & Success, an independent, nonprofit organization working to make higher education more available and affordable for people of all backgrounds. For more information see www.projectonstudentdebt.org and www.ticas.org.