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  • President Obama’s Grand Plan for American Higher Education
  • Posted By:
  • Karen W.
  • Posted On:
  • 30-Jul-2013
  • Last Wednesday, our President vowed that considerable amount of reforms will be promoted in our higher education system. This move is welcome indeed especially since he emphasized on the amount of tuition paid by students and families.

    He promised that he would work out an aggressive strategy that will totally shake the system. President Obama said that the focus would be on improving value for students and families in the middle class, keeping rising costs under control and completely shaking up the system. He stressed on the importance of keeping colleges affordable for students who are willing to work for it.

    The speech he gave at Knox College focused overall on our economy. He steered the topic completely towards the middle class and pointed out the importance of conducting the business of higher education in a completely new way. He also said that a lot of efforts were made by his administration to solve the present student loan interest rate disputes and increase student aid funds but the efforts were not enough.

    He also said that our higher education system was not disciplined enough and taxpayers and families cannot continue to pay more and more towards an undisciplined system. Costs are going up anywhere between 5 and 7 per cent a year and we will never be able to keep up in terms of enough grant money or enough loan money. Obama said that it is time we get more for what we pay.

    To make degrees shorter, certain colleges are testing new models and approaches. To help students earn credits in lesser time, some institutions are also helping them master material by combining online learning with traditional classroom teaching. He pointed out that in some states, newer ways of funding colleges are being devised based on how well students do and how many of them graduate rather than on how many of them enrol.

    There has been a consistent emphasis by Obama on how important higher education is. To get his message across, he has used mixed rhetoric on the importance of bringing about a considerable change and on taking responsibility for college costs.

    Though this does seem like a repeat of the 2012 State of Union Address, hope something productivity comes out of it. Our President has been blaming the states for budget cuts that are directly responsible for skyrocketing tuition costs. He has been constantly emphasizing on the fact that college affordability is a responsibility that has to be shared by all. 

    According the education under Secretary Martha Kanter, plan is still underway to ensure that our middle class can afford college. This is our President’s top priority, she said. To promote value for students and affordability, he is energetically pursuing effective policies and encouraging colleges to come up with innovative ideas.

    She said that shared responsibility is all about the federal government, institutions, states and students working together in harmony to bring cost of education down. This is the only way we can reach our President’s 2020 goal of producing the most number of college graduates in the world.


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