Leaders in higher education talk about college affordability

October 21, 2019 0 By Ronny Jaskolski

This isn’t about a competition, this
isn’t about AA versus bachelors versus masters versus, you know, apprenticeships. This is really all about how can we work together. Washington higher education leaders and a UW transfer student from Yakima came together January 10th to talk about affordability, completion and meeting our region’s demand for skilled workers. We really are a university that
students of modest means can come to and graduate from in a way that’s affordable. Over sixty percent of our students get some form of financial aid, and in fact
about a quarter of our students pay no tuition whatsoever. I come from a
background of agricultural parents and I’m an undocumented student here at the
University of Washington. Education seemed like a dream that I would never
be able to fulfill. The way the Seattle promise works says any Seattle public
graduate, the high school graduate, will be able to go to any Seattle college and
for tuition free. And so for the graduating class of 2020, they will be
able to choose any Seattle college to go to and that is significant because of
the variety of programs that we have and the kinds of degrees and credentials that we want our students to get. The demand for skilled and educated
workers is outstripping our supply. We have to almost double the number of
graduates that we’re putting out into the labor force. That is a big lift. Attending a university as prestigious, as highly ranked as the University of
Washington is not a privilege of a few, but a right of many and I think
that’s very important.