San Diego City College will be the site of the U.S. Department of Education’s fourth regional community college summit, Serving Military Families and Veterans, on Friday, April 15. The all-day meeting will bring together 150 participants from 11 surrounding states to identify promising practices for improving college completion. Participants will include representatives of community colleges, business, labor, industry, philanthropy, state and local governments, and students. In addition to California, participants will come from Washington, Arizona, Oregon, Hawaii, Wyoming, Montana, Utah, Nevada, Alaska, and Idaho.
U.S. Under Secretary of Education Martha Kanter will give the summit’s opening remarks at 9:00 a.m. PDT. Jack Scott, chancellor, California Community College System and Constance Carroll, chancellor, San Diego Community College System will provide morning remarks following Kanter. Additional speakers include Roberto Rodriguez, special assistant to President Obama for education, who will give the keynote address, and Kirsten White, policy director for Dr. Jill Biden, who will be the luncheon speaker.
The summit will include a series of breakout sessions on a range of topics such as college affordability, transitioning to and through postsecondary education, and forming partnerships with business and industry. Several panels will focus on the particular needs of student veterans and their families, with one facilitated by Keith Wilson, director of education services for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Another panel will be comprised of current student veterans, discussing their collegiate experiences and the challenges they face in transitioning from active duty status to civilian life as college students.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan has called community colleges the linchpin for meeting President Obama’s goal to once again lead the world in college completion by the year 2020. The San Diego meeting is the final of four regional summits convened as follow-ups to the White House Summit on Community Colleges, held last October and hosted by Dr. Jill Biden. The other summits were held over the last two months in Philadelphia, Houston, and Indianapolis.
NOTE: The morning (9 a.m. to Noon) and closing (3:15 – 4 p.m.) sessions will be livestreamed and available Friday morning at http://webcast.sdcoe.net/sdccdwrs041511/links.htm.