Velazquez Votes to Increase Access to Affordable College Education for Minorities
NEW YORK – Yesterday, Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez (D-N.Y.) joined Members of Congress to pass H.R. 2669, the College Cost Reduction Act of 2007. The bill will provide the single largest investment in higher education since the GI bill, which was signed into law in 1944. The legislation allows for significant investments in minority communities, for students and their families
“I was proud to cast my vote for the College Cost Reduction Act of 2007,” said Congresswoman Velázquez. “We should never allow financial hardship to keep our students from reaching their full potential. This bill will help make higher education more affordable for minority students here in New York, and nationwide. It is a historic step in making higher education accessible for all Americans.”
A key provision of the bill guarantees $500 million over five years for Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and Tribal Colleges. It also allows for $200 million in grants over the next five years to HSIs. About 173 HSIs, which enroll almost half of all Hispanic college students, would be eligible to receive these grants. HR 2669 would also provide $50 million to establish Centers of Excellence in teacher training at HSIs and other minority-serving institutions, and give priority funding to HSIs that increase the number of low-income students attaining degrees in science, math and technology.
“Today’s science and math majors will create the jobs of tomorrow,” Congresswoman Velázquez said. ”This bill ensures that minority students will have a chance to pursue degrees in these vital fields. All of these institutions are the perfect vehicle to support our future scientists and engineers. The success of our Hispanic and African American youth is the future of our City and nation.”