Higher education at its best prepares young people for productive and fulfilling lives. A diverse democracy requires well-informed community members with an aptitude for leadership and collaboration. A dynamic economy requires resilient talent with a commitment to lifelong learning and improvement.
Virginia’s colleges, universities, and community colleges have a vital role to play in preparing our young people to be contributing citizens, resilient workers, and effective leaders in all fields. This preparation benefits individual students and the whole community. Studies show that well-prepared students—those with marketable degrees and credentials—not only contribute more in tax revenues, but are more likely to be self-sufficient and require less spending on social services.
The great higher education institutions of the future will be those dedicated to preparing students for GREAT JOBS AND GREAT LIVES. We can lead the way in Virginia through a more transparent, consumer-friendly approach focused on the outcomes that matter most to students, their families, and the Commonwealth.
To achieve these student-focused goals, Growth4VA advocates these policy priorities:
- Provide high-quality instruction that prepares Virginians for lifelong success and contributions as good citizens, leaders, and problem-solvers.
- Focus on degrees and credentials that lead to good jobs and higher earnings for Virginia graduates and that result in lower social service costs.
- Improve job access for graduates through enhanced job placement and advising services, internships and other workplace pipeline programs, online study options, and structured courses of study.
- Empower students and parents as consumers by providing greater transparency on key outcomes, including return on investment (ROI), job placement success, earnings of graduates, internships and other work opportunities, graduation rate and pace, net four-year cost, and student loan debt levels.