Under Secretary Ted Mitchell to Serve on Panel on Higher Education Reform for Underserved Communities

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U.S. Under Secretary Ted Mitchell will participate in a panel discussion on federal policy and systemic reform of higher education at noon ET on Wednesday, Nov. 12, in Washington, D.C.

Co-sponsored by the New America Foundation and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, the panel will focus on ways to better meet the needs of historically underserved communities, including low-income, minority, first-generation, and immigrant students. The five panelists will focus on challenges facing higher education, best practices for increasing degree attainment and priorities in the upcoming reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.

The Obama Administration has made historic investments to increase the maximum Pell grant award by $1,000, create the $2,500 American Opportunity Tax Credit, and enact effective student loan reforms that eliminated subsidies to banks and reinvested in America's students and families to make college more affordable. These initiatives are targeted at expanding college access and ensuring families have the finances they need to succeed in their college pursuits and help reach the President’s goal for America to once again lead the world in college graduation.

The Obama Administration strongly believes that every child deserves the opportunity to succeed, and education is crucial to the economic strength and security of our nation and communities. The Department of Education’s work is focused on ensuring all students receive an education that prepares them for success in life and their career, through programs including Promise Neighborhoods, School Improvement Grants, Race to the Top, and ConnectED, as well as ED's work to expand access to preschool.