Kuster Hosts College Affordability Forum at ConVal Regional High School

Press Release

Date: May 3, 2016
Location: Peterborough, NH

This morning, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) hosted a forum at ConVal Regional High School with students, administrators, and community members to discuss the importance of increasing college affordability. The forum gave students and parents a chance to engage with a panel of key stakeholders in the higher education arena, and discuss initiatives aimed at increasing access and reducing the costs of postsecondary education.

"Everyone knows that a good education is the key to success. Yet far too many families in the Granite State and across the country simply cannot afford to send their children to college, or to fund any postsecondary studies," said Congresswoman Annie Kuster. "In the land of opportunity, that's simply not right. That's why I've been working on a number of initiatives to reduce the cost of college, and I've held a series of forums at colleges and high schools across the state to bring together stakeholders and families to discuss how we can work collaboratively to ensure families have the support they need to help their children access higher education. I thank all the participants in today's forum for contributing to a robust discussion about higher education costs, and I look forward to bringing their thoughts and comments back to Washington with me, where I will continue to push for measures on the federal level to increase college affordability."

Students and parents were invited to attend today's open forum at ConVal High School, where they were encouraged to share their thoughts about how the federal government can help reduce education costs for Granite State families. Kuster was joined at the forum by a number of local education stakeholders who are also working towards this mutual goal: Tori Berube, the Vice President of College Planning and Engagement at the NH Higher Education Assistance Foundation; Tom Raffio, the Chair of the NH State Board of Education; Mark Rubinstein, the President of the Granite State College; Lizbeth Gonzalez, the Vice President for Student and Community Affairs at Nashua Community College; Karen Shedin, the Vice President for Enrollment Management at Rivier University; and a number of counselors and educators from ConVal Regional High School. During the forum, participants and audience members discussed a number of topics, including college and career readiness, financial aid and grant funding, college planning resources, and dual enrollment programs, among others.

Kuster has long fought to ensure that all Granite State students can access the college education and job training necessary to further their careers, including through the critical role she played in creating New Hampshire's UNIQUE College Savings Program. During today's forum, she outlined current steps she is taking in Congress to help parents save for their children's education, and measures she is supporting to ensure students are prepared for college, including her support for the recent reauthorization of the Every Student Succeeds Act, which rectifies many of the flawed provisions implemented under the No Child Left Behind Act. Kuster successfully fought Tea Party attempts to allow student loan interest rates to double back in 2012, and she is currently pushing for legislation that would allow students and their families to refinance their loans at a lower rate. Kuster has held a number of college affordability forums at high schools and colleges across the state, and she works to help students and their families learn about resources that can help them send their children to college.