Mar 26, 2021 by Staff Report
WASHINGTON, D.C. | U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik recently helped introduce the Success for Rural Students and Communities Act to authorize $60 million in annual grants aimed at rural education, postsecondary enrollment and career advancement efforts.
Stefanik, along with U.S. Rep Josh Harder, and Senators Susan Collins (ME) and Maggie Hassan (NH) are leading the legislation to authorize the funding each year through 2027 to help rural communities spur investment and improvements in higher education and to support educational opportunities to get more rural students into high-demand local jobs.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the need to close the degree attainment gap between students from rural communities and their peers. The Success for Rural Students and Communities Act will bring local school districts together with institutions of higher education and economic organizations to ensure our North Country students have greater opportunity to enroll in college, receive their degree, and then contribute to our local economies by thriving in high-demand jobs,” Stefanik said the measure March 23.
Specifically, the bipartisan legislation would:
-Increase postsecondary enrollment and completion rates for rural students by providing early supports such as counseling, exposure to higher education programs, access to dual enrollment courses, pathways to regional employment opportunities, and help with transitions to and from high school and higher education.
-Increase postsecondary enrollment and completion rates for adult students, including through community outreach and programs focused on degree completion and persistence.
-Create or strengthen postsecondary programs and training opportunities in locally relevant fields, including by developing work-based learning and supporting associated costs, awarding prior-learning and competency-based credit, expanding career pathways to credentials, and engaging local employers and boards in developing programs and curricula.
-Generate local and regional development strategies that create employment opportunities for students with postsecondary degrees, including by connecting local talent with local employers and addressing barriers to success.
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