The PJ Tatler

Biden Florida Visit: College Degrees for Everyone

On the heels of President Obama vowing a revamp of America’s work force in his State of the Union address, Vice President Biden is visiting swing state Florida on Monday in the White House’s new push for college education for all.

The “Blueprint for Keeping College Affordable and Within Reach for All Americans” was released three days after the State of the Union address and includes:

  • The administration rating higher-education institutions with a “College Scorecard”
  • Making mandatory colleges’ participation in the “Financial Aid Shopping Sheet”
  • A new collection of earnings and employment information gathered from colleges
  • At least $1.55 billion in “investment” awards to encourage state and local colleges to make administration-agenda reforms

And though much of the return to American glory days pushed by Obama in his address — namely, “an economy built on American manufacturing, American energy, skills for American workers, and a renewal of American values” — requires vocational skills (remember his Master Lock example?), Biden will be pushing the mantra Monday that every American needs a college degree. “In today’s global economy, a college education is no longer just a privilege for some, but rather a prerequisite for all,” the White House states in Biden’s weekly schedule. “To reach a national goal of leading the world with the highest share of college graduates by 2020, we must make college more affordable.”

“He will also echo President Obama’s call to Congress to advance new reforms that will promote shared responsibility to address the college affordability challenge,” the White House release continues. “If these proposals are passed, this will be the first time in history that the federal government has tied federal campus aid to responsible campus tuition policies.” This directly refers to the post-SOTU “blueprint”.

For his part, Obama on Tuesday hosts his second science fair at the White House — the first was in 2010, designed to push math and science education.