PHILADELPHIA (November 9, 2020) – The American people have spoken, declaring Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Kamala D. Harris as the next leaders of the executive branch. In doing so, they set the direction of our collective future, including how higher education will support #RealCollege students and educators in the coming years. The Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice congratulates President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Harris, and offers its full support for the difficult work ahead. We also applaud Dr. Jill Biden, a long-time instructor at Northern Virginia Community College, who will be the First Professor.
Biden and Harris have a strong track record of prioritizing and advancing higher education opportunities, including via the American Graduation Initiative, America’s College Promise, and the Basic Assistance for Students in College Act. These leaders clearly recognize the need for increased investments in public higher education and Minority-Serving Institutions, as well as support for students’ basic needs, centering both within the Democratic National Committee platform. On the campaign trail, they also signaled a commitment to improving faculty working conditions, starting with addressing the crisis facing adjunct professors.
Representation matters, and #RealCollege students will benefit from national leaders who have the chance to truly center the interests of women and Black and Brown communities. Their own educations, earned at colleges and universities often given short-shrift in public discourse, also matter – they know the value of educational institutions that are inclusive rather than exclusive. We are especially heartened by the empathy that this team brings as they emphasize the “dignity of simply being human.”
We urge the entire #RealCollege community to join us in working closely with the transition team and the new Administration, centering scientific evidence and fighting for the resources needed to honor the dignity, humanity, and quality education all students deserve. Now is the time for changing the things we cannot accept, getting into good trouble, and pursuing real and enduring change.
We are optimistic about the future, knowing that hope has a strategy.