WASHINGTON – (July 31, 2012) – In response to a report released today by the US Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP Committee) on proprietary colleges, Harry Alford, president of the National Black Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) issued the following statement:
"We are disappointed by reports that once again, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) has unfairly targeted private sector education in a biased report that has the potential to negatively affect the prospects and opportunities for higher education and job training for thousands of low-income and minority students.
In many underserved communities, access to education is a lifeline. The National Black Chamber of Commerce believes that actions against industries offering educational options to our nation's African American and minority students are partial and detrimental to educational advancement in our communities.
Senator Harkin, who we do not believe speaks for the entire committee, may be misjudging how critical proprietary colleges are to serving minority students. Nearly half of students attending proprietary schools are minorities. They choose these colleges for their flexibility, career focus and success with nontraditional students. Given that just over eight percent of Senator Harkin's constituents are considered minorities, perhaps he is a bit out of touch.
The National Black Chamber of Commerce remains committed to ensuring that African American and other minority students are afforded the opportunity to choose the education institution that best suits their needs."
About the NBCC: The National Black Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to economically empowering and sustaining African American communities through entrepreneurship and capitalistic activity within the United States and via interaction with the Black Diaspora.
For more information, please call NBCC at (202) 466-6888 or visit www.uneducatedpolicy.com.