by Sarah Armstrong Tucker, Chancellor of the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission and Community and Technical College System West Virginia’s higher education institutions are powerful engines of innovation. Faculty and students are constantly exploring, discovering, and solving some of the most pressing problems facing society today. They challenge each other to advance in their…

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(November 4, 2016) – Today marks the close of West Virginia’s seventh annual “College Application and Exploration Week,” a statewide initiative to help our students evaluate their options to pursue higher education. Students at nearly 450 schools across the state, from preschools to adult learning centers, participated in events that allowed them to begin thinking about…

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Kendyl Ryan

Originally published in the Charleston Gazette-Mail, Daily Mail editorial page. Earlier this week, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin joined leaders across the nation in proclaiming this week “National GEAR UP Week,” highlighting the importance of going to college and encouraging students to pursue their dreams. It’s common knowledge that a high school education simply doesn’t cut…

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Published in the Charleston Gazette-Mail, Gazette editorial page Last week, faculty and staff from West Virginia’s public colleges and universities set forth on a bold path to dramatically improve college completion rates in the state. The work occurred as part of the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission’s Corequisite Academy, a two-day conference held in…

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I believe that all kids are little scientists. This is especially evident when they ask all those “why” and “how” questions. By ensuring they continue to experience the fun and excitement of science as they grow older, we can create a new generation of scientists, researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs who will, in turn, grow our…

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The recent news that 52 percent of West Virginia high school seniors completed a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is good news for the state. Young people who complete this process become eligible for student aid, such as grants, scholarships and loans, that can help them obtain a college education. Some West Virginia…

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Published April 7, 2016 in the Charleston Gazette-Mail Enrolling in college or other post-high school training is the best decision some students will ever make. Despite the years of hard work, a post-secondary education for many students can set them on a course of lifelong success. That decision is to be celebrated, and the West…

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This commentary appeared in the February 25, 2016 edition of the Charleston Gazette-Mail. As a young boy growing up in rural West Virginia, I loved discovery. I was fascinated by the idea of putting two things together and getting something entirely new, how things worked and why frogs croaked in the spring. So I was…

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As West Virginians honor those who have served and continue serving this Veterans Day, our state’s public colleges and universities have rallied together to create a stronger level of support for veterans and service members who are working to further their education. This year, the Higher Education Policy Commission and Community and Technical College System…

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On November 8, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the Higher Education Act, unparalleled federal legislation that strengthened investments in public colleges and universities and provided dedicated support to students pursuing higher education. On that day 50 years ago, he said, “This will swing open a new door for the young people of America…the…

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From the Charleston Gazette-Mail Higher Education Chancellor Paul Hill shared some disturbing news in a meeting with Gazette-Mail editors last week: West Virginia has lost significant ground on the rate of high school graduates going on to college. As of five years ago, West Virginia had worked up to 61.5 percent of students going on…

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From the Charleston Gazette-Mail.  The statistics are well-known: West Virginia has the fewest adults with bachelor’s degrees, the fewest number of adults working and the highest student loan default rate in the country. Combating those statistics is hard, but something Higher Education Policy Commission Chancellor Paul Hill works to do every day. Hill and other HEPC…

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This commentary appeared in the August 30, 2015 edition of the Charleston Gazette-Mail. In 1963, my father lost his coal mining job at the Kopperston No. 1 mine in Wyoming County. With very little money, we returned to our farm in Lincoln County, hoping for better days. It was a challenging time for our family…

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High school seniors have the world at their fingertips – and a lot on their plates. Planning for the future can be overwhelming. Choosing what’s next after graduation is one of the biggest decisions they’ll face, but if that decision includes a college education then the first step is clear: Complete the FAFSA. The Free…

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A column by Governor Earl Ray Tomblin (October 20, 2014) – Today marks the start of West Virginia’s fifth annual “College Application and Exploration Week,” a statewide celebration of the higher education opportunities available to our state’s students. This week, nearly 240 schools across the state will host college planning activities that provide guidance on…

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This commentary appeared in the September 30 edition of the Charleston Gazette.  When preparing for college, there are so many questions students must consider — from which school and major are the right fit, to choosing from financial aid options and mapping out schedules. Through all of this detailed planning, I believe it’s clear that…

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Nearly 50 years ago, President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the first Higher Education Act, an unprecedented step that invested an increased level of federal dollars in colleges and universities and provided financial assistance for students pursuing higher education. The objective was to expand opportunities for students, inspire their minds and imaginations – and give…

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Like so many West Virginians, Crystin Povenski and her siblings were raised by parents who instilled in them the importance of hard work and the value of learning. She worked hard and, as a result of her good grades in high school and commitment to attending college in the Mountain State, she received a PROMISE…

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Today at the State Capitol, colleges and universities from across West Virginia have come together to showcase the vast opportunities for a high-quality postsecondary education right here at home. From Shepherdstown to Huntington, Morgantown to Athens, and at multiple points in between, we have an array of affordable options for earning college degrees at public…

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