How does free community college sound?

How does free community college sound?

Almost too good to be true, no?

But the Obama administration has it in the works, and on Wednesday, the College hosted three viewing parties to watch him discuss the next steps to make what sounds like a pipe dream into something tangible.

About 30 people gathered in Anthony Commons on Wednesday to watch President Obama introduce the College Promise Advisory Board to the country.

Several people gathered in Anthony Commons on Wednesday to watch President Obama introduce the College Promise Advisory Board to the country.

“A higher education shouldn’t mean taking on a lifetime of debt because it’s hard to get ahead when you start so far behind. That’s why I want to make two years of community college education free for responsible students.” ~ President Obama

He used the speech to introduce the College Promise Advisory Board, which kicked off Wednesday. If you weren’t able to make a viewing party or watch the announcement on your own, here are some of the highlights of what you missed:

  • The board is a national group made of businesses, charities, labor groups, non-profits, and those from the educational sector.
  • Ivy Tech president Tom Snyder is on the board.
  • Anyone looking to get involved at a grass roots level can sign up at HeadsUpAmerica.us.
  • A number of college across the country have already launched their own free college programs, though it seems the participating states and colleges all seem to define “free” differently.
  • By taking the program nationwide, 9 million students stand to benefit yearly.
  • The two years of free community college means students who want to transfer to a four-year university after finishing their associate degree would receive the first half of their bachelor’s degree free, and those who enroll for skills training would graduate ready-to-work without a pile of student debt.
  • Obama said two years of community college would be free to those willing to work for it. Heads Up America loosely defines “work for it” as getting good grades and being serious about completing that degree or certificate.

Want to learn more?

  • Check out the White House’s fact sheet from Obama’s announcement here.
  • This brief video gives a general overview of the “why.”
  • Watch the full speech–which kicks off with Second Lady Jill Biden, who will co-chair the College Promise Advisory Board–here.

Do you think you’ll plan to help through Heads Up America? Did you sign up to receive more info through the site?

Green Light will take a break next week, but we’ll see you back here Sept. 25!

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