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2016 MILLENNIAL MEMO (September 9, 2015): Keeping tabs on higher education debates

2016 MILLENNIAL MEMO (September 9, 2015)

425 days to go…

Good Wednesday morning, everyone! I hope you had a nice, restful Labor Day weekend. It’s been a quiet week on the campaign trail, but there are a few developments I didn’t want you to miss. Have a great short week!

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MAJORITY OF AMERICAN VOTERS SUPPORT “MAJOR NEW FEDERAL SPENDING” TO HELP STUDENTS PAY TUITION AT PUBLIC COLLEGES: A recent national Quinnipiac survey finds “American voters support 61 – 34 percent ‘major new spending by the federal government’ to help students pay tuition at public colleges. Support is 85 – 12 percent among Democrats and 57 – 37 percent among independent voters, with Republicans opposed 59 – 36 percent. All age groups support the measure, especially voters 18 to 34 years old, who back the idea 76 – 21 percent. Support is the same among voters with or without a college degree.”

KASICH SAYS CAMPAIGN IS CONSIDERING STUDENT DEBT RELIEF FOR THOSE THAT DO “SOME HARD WORK”: The Columbus Dispatch’s Darrel Rowland reports that while on a recent campaign swing through New Hampshire, Ohio “Gov. John Kasich [said] his team is considering a plan to let students do ‘some hard work’ to get college-debt relief.”

BUSH FAULTS COURSE OFFERINGS AND LACK OF COUNSELING IN GRADUATION DELAYS: For those that have followed Governor Bush’s comments about higher education on the campaign trail this year, there is one statistic that keeps coming up: 60 percent of all college graduates take more than 4-years to complete a 4-year degree. According to Bloomberg’s Laura Curtis, Governor Bush gave insight into what he sees as the drivers of this problem. “Most students don’t graduate in 4 yrs because [according to Bush,] ‘it’s hard to get all your courses, sometimes you change your mind, there’s not enough kind of up-front counseling to say… This is how you get your basic course work done.’”

O’MALLEY CALLS FOR BOOSTING NUMBER OF SERVICE CORPS POSITIONS, OFFERING “EXPANDED” PELL GRANTS FOR SERVICE MEMBERS: Marketwatch’s Jillian Berman reports: “O’Malley’s proposal to expand public service opportunities, which features several options, goes further than other presidential candidates’ plans. Under his plan, O’Malley would offer service corps members an ‘enhanced’ Pell Grant — the federal government money available for low-income students to pay for college — that would cover the cost of attending a public university in the student’s states. O’Malley would also expand AmeriCorps to 250,000 positions by 2020 and 500,000 positions by 2024. O’Malley staffers highlighted the unmet demand for service opportunities in materials announcing his proposal, pointing to data from ServiceNation, an organization aimed at making a year of national service de rigueur in the U.S., that shows AmeriCorps receives about 400,000 applications a year for 80,000 spots. In addition, O’Malley would work with Congress to double the number of Peace Corps volunteers, partner with private businesses to help them offer service opportunities for young people and encourage them to give preference in hiring to applicants who have completed a year of service. The O’Malley campaign offered color on the cost of some aspects of the plan, but the overall cost of the proposals is still unclear. Expanding the Peace Corps and AmeriCorps would cost up to $4.5 billion through 2024, according to the O’Malley camp. O’Malley could foot the bill through measures like closing the carried interest loophole.”

CLINTON SURROGATE, HOWARD DEAN, PUSHES HILLARY TO FORGIVE HALF OF ALL STUDENT DEBT: According to the Keene Sentinel’s Martha Shanahan, at a New Hampshire house party, former Vermont Governor Howard Dean “[spoke] to voters about the former secretary of State’s plan to address student debt. Clinton announced at an Exeter town hall meeting last month that, if elected, she would use $350 billion in federal money over 10 years to pay for students to attend public universities without having to take out loans. The plan would also allow people with student loans to refinance their debt at affordable costs. ‘The goal is to have a debt-free education in every public institution,’ Dean said. Dean said he would suggest adding a policy to forgive half of all student debt. ‘It’s not so easy; you can’t just pick half of the people and forgive their debt. But we need to forgive; get rid of it.’”

MEASURING UP MILLENNIALS: A recent poll from SurveyUSA finds a prospective Vice President Al Gore candidacy could prove popular with Millennial voters. The poll finds Gore would actually garner more support from Millennial voters in a hypothetical matchup against Donald Trump than any other Democratic primary candidate. Here is how the candidates matchup among registered Millennial voters:

Clinton: 50, Trump: 31

Sanders: 47, Trump: 32

Biden: 47, Trump: 32

Gore: 52, Trump: 30

The poll also finds that among registered voters supporting Hillary Clinton, Millennials are the least enthusiastic age group.


What staggering loan defaults at for-profit schools say about accreditors, The Washington Post, Danielle Douglas-Gabriel

POLL: Support for Free, Inside Higher Ed, Scott Jaschik

Everyone is talking about simplifying the FAFSA. Here is what you need to know., The Chronicle of Higher Education, Goldie Blumenstyk & Beckie Supiano