August 22, 2014
It�s hard to believe
that summer is coming to an end and a new school year is just around
the corner. As we prepare to send our kids back to the classroom,
Congress has been working to ensure their path to higher education is
smoother and more accessible.
College is becoming increasingly
important for young people entering today�s workforce. The advantages
of a college degree are clear � degree holders earn more on average
over their lifetimes, and report higher levels of satisfaction with their
work. The problem is, for some, college is just out of reach due to
financial barriers or other obligations.
With this in mind,
the House of Representatives recently passed two pieces of legislation
which seek to make the benefits of a college degree more accessible
to all students.
The would amend the Higher Education Act of 1965 to require institutions of
higher learning to provide annual counseling to student borrowers who
take loans under the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan program.
Creating a channel to access this helpful information about the nature of
student loans will allow prospective borrowers to make more informed
decisions about how best to manage their student debt. For example, many
students do not know that they are not obligated to accept the full
amount of a loan offer. This legislation seeks to clarify any questions
students may have about their rights and responsibilities when
navigating the loan process.
The would direct the Secretary of Education to implement a voluntary
test program to evaluate the potential benefits of a competency-based
education model for certain higher education programs.
Competency-based education is defined as �.�
This self-paced model has significant advantages for people leading
busy professional or family lives which often can prevent them from
attending full-time degree programs.
It is my hope that the
United States Senate will pass these important bills, and the President
will sign them into law. Making higher education accessible to all those
interested is a worthy goal, and something which should be a high
priority for our elected officials. We succeed as a community when our
young people have opportunities to grow personally and professionally -
and higher education is a valuable step down the road to prosperity
I am honored to serve in Congress on behalf of
Utah families like yours. As your representative, I always appreciate
hearing from you on current topics and issues affecting you and our
community. Please areas you
find especially interesting or where I can provide you with additional
information. I value your ideas and look forward to hearing from
4th District of Utah