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A year later, the momentum from the work of the Commission on Higher Education is growing

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A year later, the momentum from the work of the Commission on Higher Education is growing

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Mamie Voight is President and Director General of the Institute for Higher Education Policy and has served as a Managing Partner of the Higher Education Commission. Mildred Garcia is president and CEO of the American Association of Public Colleges and Universities and was co-chair of the commission. Jose Luis Cruz Rivera is president of the University of Northern Arizona and was a board member.

Mamie Voight is president and CEO of the Institute for Higher Education Policy

Mamie Voight

Permission is granted by IHEP with credit from Imagine Photography DC

A year ago today, Higher Education Evaluation Commission released a clear definition fair supreme value, innovative and practical framework for measurable value, and en agenda to guide federal and state politicians, college leaders, and families. This group of 30 higher education experts and national leaders, supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and led by the Institute for Higher Education Policy, sought to identify the value of higher education in the United States.

Mildred Garcia - President and CEO of the American Association of Public Colleges and Universities

Mildred Garcia

Permission granted by AASCU

In the 365 days that have passed since then, we have been deeply encouraged by the impetus for our country’s higher education system to recognize that, according to the commission, “students feel the value of higher education when given equal access and support to full quality and available powers that offer economic mobility and prepare them to promote racial and economic justice in our society ”. Our roles are led by the American Association of Public Colleges and Universities Institute of Higher Education Policy and the University of Northern Arizona, we are encouraged by this clear shift in this area, as evidenced by data usage, ambitious institutional strategic plans, and bold nationwide goals.

Jose Luis Cruz Rivera is president of the University of Northern Arizona.

Jose Luis Cruz Rivera

Permission is granted by the University of Northern Arizona

Institutions, researchers and politicians, as well as journalists of higher education applied for a start Equitable Value Explorer, an online tool that IHEP has helped create to better demonstrate the economic value that 4,000 higher education institutions provide to their students. By understanding return on investment for students across the country, we as an industry can more accurately see where students go ahead, just gain or even lag behind, and then thoughtfully use data to improve student performance.

As an inspiring example of institutional change, NAU has fully embraced the call to change and measure the value provided to students of different / ethnicity, income and gender, and to use this data to guide fair policies and practices.

NAU stock capital strategic road map teaches a bold vision to serve as an engine of opportunity for students and the communities they represent in Arizona and beyond. Already NAU has made significant progress to ensure equitable higher education, including new admission policies and Access2Excellence an initiative that provides free tuition to Arizona students with the greatest financial needs. The NAU joins four other well-thought-out and committed peers at the forefront of the fair value movement within the AASCU Task Force on Higher Value.

We see exciting momentum at the state level as well, including in Texas, where embedded leaders the fair value of higher education in their strategic plan for higher education, linking completion goals to increased income-related powers. Moreover, talks are under way with several states interested in participating in the inaugural cohort of the Value Data Collaborative Cooperation, which is a national fact-based IHEP effort to foster economic mobility through post-secondary education. VDC will apply The main base of values ​​of higher education answer critical questions about fair value and inform government and institutional improvement strategies through a data-oriented community of practice.

The commission first met in 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic turned all aspects of our society upside down, including our higher education system. Today, a year after the results are published, the improvements are becoming more relevant at every level.

Given how much the pandemic has exacerbated racial and socioeconomic inequality, our country needs higher education to realize its potential as a path to a better salary and a better life for all students. Our work to ensure equitable higher education for blacks, Hispanics and / or Hispanics, Indigenous peoples, Asian American and Pacific Islanders, and low-income students remains essential to our collective ability to create a just and equitable society.

The Commission has spent more than two years studying and evaluating the value of post-secondary training and developing core resources to launch this field-oriented fair value movement. Over the past year, the higher education community has stepped up to make the lofty idea of ​​providing a fair higher education a reality by setting clear goals and objectives. Across the country, higher education leaders and decision-makers are embracing this new wave of higher education policy-making and clearly prefer economic mobility and fair value.

Progress in this area over the past year is causing energy. Given today’s growing momentum, we look forward with optimism and determination, wanting to see what additional policies, priorities and progress in the coming years will change countless lives thanks to the power of higher education.

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