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Susan D. Phillips Delivers U.S. Senate Testimony on Reauthorizing Higher Education Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 18, 2013) — University at Albany Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Susan D. Phillips is scheduled to appear Thursday before the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP) to offer expert testimony on the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA).

Provost Phillips

Provost & Vice President for Academic Affairs Susan Phillips

Committee Chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Ranking Member Lamar Alexander (R-TN) announced on Tuesday that HELP will hold a series of hearings over the next several months to examine important policy issues facing U.S. postsecondary education in order to inform views on HEA reauthorization. In a joint letter, the two senators said HELP will seek recommendations on the issues “from diverse voices throughout higher education.”

Phillips, who previously served UAlbany as dean of the School of Education, is an internationally recognized scholar in vocational psychology whose research has focused on decision-making and career development. She was the 1991 recipient of the American Psychological Association Division of Counseling Psychology John Holland Award for Outstanding Achievement in Personality and Career Research.

The hearings are expected to cover topics such as:

  • The roles of the state, the federal government, and accreditors in higher education;
  • Keeping college affordable;
  • Examining ways to increase quality in higher education;
  • Student access;
  • Innovative approaches to improving student success;
  • Student financial aid; and
  • Teacher preparation programs.

Testifying along with Phillips will be Paul E. Lingenfelter, former president of the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association; Terry W. Hartle, senior vice president of the American Council on Education; and Marshall A. Hill, executive director of the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements.

“The reauthorization of the Higher Education Act will provide a unique opportunity for Congress to act to improve college access and affordability, while ensuring that students receive a quality education,” said Harkin.

Alexander added, “These hearings will help Congress address how the federal government can create an environment in which 6,000 colleges and universities of many types and sizes can combine to be the best higher education system in the world, while providing choices for students at a reasonable cost.”

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