Today’s students come from all walks of life. They are parents, working adults, veterans, online students and first-generation college-goers, following many pathways through higher education. They need a system that is flexible, affordable and responsive to their needs. Federal policy must reflect who today’s students are.
Quality & Outcomes
High-quality outcomes are paramount, but current quality assurance approaches are inadequate. The nation needs a system of quality assurance based on high-quality learning and focused on students and their outcomes. Federal policy must raise the bar for quality, promote innovation and shift from inputs to outcomes.
Voices of Today’s Students
Your State’s Higher Education Profile
Our Higher Education Act (HEA) recommendations are for the critical improvements that are needed to remedy the disconnect between federal policy and the needs of today’s students, and ensure our federal higher education programs work for the current and future generations.
Champions Network: Bipartisan Leaders United for Today’s Students
The Higher Learning Advocates Champions Network is a group of forward-thinking state and local leaders devoted to improving quality, outcomes and affordability in postsecondary education. Learn more about how these reformers are driving student success through student-focused policies and practices at the state and local level. Discover more about the Champions Network.
Higher Education Policy: 101
Complex policy issues need simple explanations. Featuring visual infographics, compact definitions anduser-friendly explanations, our 101 explainers offer policymakers, analysts and media a quick and easy to consume explanation of key policy issues in postsecondary education.
Latest News and Resources
Senators Introduce Bipartisan FUTURE Act Amendment to Simplify FAFSA, Streamline Repayment, and Permanently Fund HBCUs and MSIs
WASHINGTON (December 4, 2019) — Yesterday, Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander and Ranking Member Patty Mur…
Higher Learning Advocates Endorses the Helping Student Parents Succeed Act
WASHINGTON (November 21, 2019) — Julie Peller, Executive Director of Higher Learning Advocates, made the following statement to express Higher Learning Advocat…
Policy Brief Recommends Changes to Federal Aid Requirements
Deputy Executive Director Emily Bouck West argues in Diverse Issues in Higher Education that holding institutions accountable on a program-level basis can show…
Voices of Reform
India Heckstall says, To build an equitable higher education system worthy of the name, we must respond to the new disparities that affect the working adult, the student parent, the returning veteran, and others. Only then can higher education live up to its fundamental promise of upward mobility and complete the work begun by the equity and civil rights pioneers generations ago.
Program Associate, Higher Learning Advocates
Mike Krause says, The perception of the average American college student is not correct, and we must ensure these shifting demographics are reflected in the policy development process. The notion that 18-year-old freshman serve as the foundation for how we view college and universities has to change.
Executive Director, Tennessee Higher Education Commission
Emily Bouck says, To equip students with the skills for workforce success and respond to the pressures of economic disruption, we need a system of higher learning that enables students of all ages and family circumstances to seamlessly continue, return to, and complete their education.
Policy & Advocacy Director, Higher Learning Advocates
Amelia Parnell says, Postsecondary education is an avenue for students to become more engaged citizens, contributors to the public good, and advocates for themselves and others.
Vice President for Research and Policy, NASPA
Moises Mendoza says, There are so many brilliant students that never make it to college because of the complicated process. If we make college more accessible the brilliant students from my high school would not only improve the college communities but also the country as a whole.
Scholar, Leadership Enterprise for a Diverse America
Ryan Craig says, America needs a thriving traditional system of colleges and universities that minimizes debt and maximizes workforce and civic potential. Achieving this goal means facing the crisis of graduate employability and rethinking our current system of accreditation.
Managing Director, University Ventures