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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: January 6, 2021 11:23 AM
From: Representative Peter Schweyer
To: All House members
Subject: Community Colleges
According to a national survey, individuals impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic are more interested in the type of education and training offered by community colleges than any other sector of higher education. Pennsylvania community colleges enroll around 300,000 credit and noncredit students annually, which is 42% of the student population at degree-granting institutions in the Commonwealth. Community colleges serve as an important gateway for students who want to attain a baccalaureate degree at one of Pennsylvania’s public 4-year institutions. Additionally, Pennsylvania's community colleges educate 44% of the most needy students enrolled in higher education as measured by Pell status, yet they are continuously shortchanged when it comes to funding.
As we continue to navigate the continuously changing tides of COVID-19 and the diverse challenges accompanied with this pandemic, it is now more important than ever that we focus on workforce development and educational opportunities for employers, displaced workers, and students. We must do more as legislators to support these institutions of higher education that invest so much in the economic health and wellbeing of our communities, which is why my legislation would appropriate $92 million to Pennsylvania’s 14 community colleges. This funding would aid COVID-19 safety precautions, the changing landscape of virtual education, emerging job training opportunities, and so much more.
Please join me in co-sponsoring legislation to support our exceptional network of community colleges that provide opportunities to our students and working families.

Introduced as HB655