Last week, President Obama announced new steps to build momentum nationwide to make two years of community college free. As part of this effort, he announced the creation of the College Promise Campaign and its advisory board, led by Dr. Jill Biden and former Wyoming governor Jim Geringer and directed by Martha Kanter, distinguished visiting professor of higher education at NYU Steinhardt and former U.S. under secretary of education.
The College Promise Campaign – a national, nonpartisan higher education initiative – will mobilize an influential and growing network to educate the public on the benefits of free, high-quality community college education. Its advisory board is led by honorary chair Jill Biden and honorary vice chair and former Wyoming Governor Jim Geringer, with Kanter directing the board.
“We are working to build national support for extending the guarantee of education for all beyond a high school diploma. The College Promise Campaign will promote the urgency of making at least a two-year community college education available to every student who works hard to earn his or her degree or certificate,” Kanter said.
“This is critically important for America’s social and economic prosperity and democracy’s future.”
The board will bring together luminaries and leaders from the business, philanthropy, nonprofit, labor, and education sectors to highlight community college successes, share best practices and models, and recruit more of their peers to join the cause.
“In the 21st century a high school diploma is no longer enough to lead Americans to a good job and decent quality of life,” the College Promise Campaign said in a press release.
A goal of the College Promise Campaign is to help communities and states leverage the passion of students, families, cross-sector leaders, and other stakeholders to create College Promise programs that fit their specific student populations. The campaign’s success will measured by how many students enter and complete a quality community college education, and by tracking the adoption of College Promise programs across the country.