STATEMENT FROM AASCU PRESIDENT MILDRED GARCÍA, ED.D., ON PROPOSED SENATE REPUBLICAN CORONAVIRUS RELIEF LEGISLATION

While we appreciate the attention that the Senate coronavirus relief legislation directs at higher education, the bill is disappointing for its omission of important direct assistance that institutions desperately need to continue some operations, educate their students going forward and contribute to the eventual stabilization of their surrounding communities.

We urge Congress and the administration to act in concert and provide the relief that the higher education sector has  requested. Include these policy recommendations in the third supplemental bill being currently discussed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Colleges and universities confront billions of dollars in lost revenues and escalating expenses. Unlike for-profit businesses, our institutions will not be able to make up these losses from future profits. Immediate and decisive federal intervention is urgently needed if we are to preserve our higher education infrastructure and maintain the capacity to contribute to the nation's recovery from this public health crisis and economic disaster. The close to 400 regional comprehensive universities and systems that comprise the membership of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities are the economic and cultural backbone of most of the communities in which they are located and are educating the new majority for the nation.

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The American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) is a Washington, D.C.- based higher education association of nearly 400 public colleges, universities, and systems whose members share a learning- and teaching-centered culture, a historic commitment to underserved student populations, and a dedication to research and creativity that advances their regions’ economic progress and cultural development. These are institutions Delivering America’s Promise of Opportunities for All.