Durbin Meets With Leaders From Illinois Community Colleges To Discuss Higher Education Issues

WASHINGTON, DC] – U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met today with leaders from Illinois community colleges to discuss higher education issues including reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, college textbook affordability, student loan debt, and the Community College to Career Fund Act. A photo of today’s meeting is available here.

“I was pleased to meet with representatives of the fine community colleges across Illinois,” Durbin said. “Community colleges make up the largest and most affordable sector of the nation’s higher education system. They are positioned to give students a quality education, prepare them for the jobs of the future, and help address the growing problem of student loan debt.”

Last year, Senator Durbin joined Senator Al Franken (D-MN) in introducing the Community College to Career Fund Act. The bill will help train 2 million Americans for jobs in high-demand industries – such as health care, advanced manufacturing, clean energy, and information technology – by promoting partnerships between two-year colleges and businesses with funding through a competitive grant program. The National Association of Manufacturers estimates that as many as 600,000 jobs nationwide are unfilled because businesses cannot find workers with the right skills – also known as the “skills gap”

Earlier today, Senator Durbin was joined by U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) in a colloquy on the Senate Floor to discuss America’s exploding student loan debt crisis, and efforts that are underway to help working families better manage their student loan debt and ensure basic protections for new students.