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New Commission Aims to Improve Employability of New England College Grads

Governor Gina M. Raimondo today joined the New England Board of Higher Education to announce the creation of a new regional Commission on Higher Education and Employability, designed to work with the private sector to improve the career readiness of New England college and university graduates.

Raimondo will serve as the Commission's chair.

"When the private and public sectors work together, we all win," Raimondo said. "Here in Rhode Island, we've taken steps to make college more affordable and accessible for every student. We now offer the PSAT and SAT at no cost to students, during the school day. Students can earn college credits for free while still in high school through our Advanced Coursework Network. And the General Assembly is currently considering my Rhode Island Promise proposal, which would give every Rhode Island student a two-year scholarship to any of our state institutions. I'm proud to join leaders from across New England to continue the conversation on how to best prepare our students for their lives after college."

The Commission will develop a regional action plan that includes policy recommendations and strategies to align higher education institutions, policymakers and business with the goal of increasing the career readiness of graduates of New England colleges and universities. The plan will be released in a report slated for October 2017.

"New England has a world-famous concentration of higher education assets," said NEBHE President Michael K. Thomas. "But facing a shrinking population of young people and a fast-changing digital economy, we need to optimize how higher education and other stakeholders in the innovation ecosystem provide our students with the right skills to match tomorrow's jobs."

The Commission's membership includes leaders in business, education, health and government. A full list of members is available here.


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