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Eduventures Summit 2018
June 13 - June 15
For the past 40 years, higher education had its fair share of controversies but almost everyone agreed on the fundamentals. A college degree was integral to the modern American Dream—the ticket to opportunity, upward social mobility, and a more equitable society. Higher education fostered universal civic values and stood apart from partisan politics. Expanding access to higher education was a widely shared goal.
No longer. The Trump Administration’s stance on higher education is coming into focus, fanning long-smoldering tensions. Certainties like tax breaks to encourage enrollment and the line distinguishing non-profit from for-profit institutions may be swept away. A demand for accountability is in place for all schools that benefit from federal student aid, which would examine graduate outcomes, earnings, and debt repayment program-by-program. Postsecondary education is championed but sub-degree credentials, unaccredited training providers, and apprenticeships are in favor. Nothing is decided, but the direction is clear.
In recent decades, higher education policy has been about fine-tuning the system, not a battle of ideas. Today, the call for a smaller government challenges public spending, and private wrestles public good.