Following President Obama’s townhall with the Hispanic Community on the state of education, Penny Lee, Managing Director of the Coalition for Educational Success released the following statement:
"With Latinos comprising an increasing number of Americans, it is vital that we ensure that they have the opportunity to access the higher education of their choosing. Career colleges provide a vital pathway for Latinos and non-traditional students, including full-time workers, workforce returners, working parents, minorities and veterans, among others, to attain a higher education and a better life. Latino students comprise 13% of the nearly 2.6 million students who enroll in career colleges. Fifty-eight percent of all Latino students who received certificates in 2008-09 earned them at a career college.
"If the President is serious about out educating and out competing the world, then the U.S. Department of Education must stop the development of its proposed gainful employment regulation that would harm career college students. If the Department excludes career colleges from the higher education conversation, then it will exclude Latino students who have already invested in them as a pathway to achieving the American Dream.
“If the regulation is promulgated, it would block access to higher education for millions of students including hundreds of thousands of Latinos. Instead of limiting access to education for Americans who stand to benefit the most from a degree or certificate, the Department should be working to protect all avenues to higher education.”
A diverse set of voices from the Latino community have recognized the threat the regulation poses to students’ access to higher education and have strongly opposed or expressed concern about the impact the rule will have on Latino students. The National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators (NHCSL), the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, ASPIRA and MANA have voiced their opposition to the rule. NHCSL president, Sen. Iris Martinez wrote in an op-ed, “we urge the department to think carefully about the unintended consequences of a rule that may also close doors on programs that work.”
About the Coalition for Educational Success
The Coalition for Educational Success includes many of the nation’s leading career colleges, serving more than 350,000 students at 478 campuses in 41 states. Career colleges provide training for students in 17 of the 20 fastest growing fields. The Coalition advocates for policies that support wider access to higher education, particularly for non-traditional students including full-time workers, workforce returners, working parents, minorities and veterans.