Washington, DC – Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) President Peter McPherson today issued the following statement on President Biden’s State of the Union address.
“As we prepare to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Pell Grant this year, it was very encouraging to see President Biden make the case for increasing the program’s maximum award. We applaud President Biden for his commitment to expanding college access and affordability through an increase in the maximum Pell Grant and call on Congress to approve it as part of an effort to ultimately #DoublePell.
“We also thank President Biden for proposing critical investments in HBCUs and other Minority Serving Institutions. These institutions play a vital role in educating students from historically underserved backgrounds and investing in their success is key to harnessing the talents of all graduates and ensuring diversity in leading industries. Utilizing the platform of the State of the Union address to make the case for greater investments in these institutions, and the students they serve, makes clear that this administration appropriately views such action as a priority.
“Additionally, we thank President Biden his support of emerging technologies and U.S. manufacturing as well as for calling on Congress to reach a bipartisan compromise consistent to bolster U.S. competitiveness. As lawmakers move forward on legislation to bolster U.S. competitiveness, we urge them to reach a bipartisan compromise that the public university community can support.
“As the president made clear in his address, we absolutely must provide a path to citizenship for Dreamers. These young people are part of our nation’s story. Many of them study on public university campuses. They will help chart a brighter future for themselves, their families, and our country.
“What’s more, APLU and the public and land-grant university community stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine, including all those who are part of its academic community, as they fight against the senseless Russian invasion to safeguard their freedom, democracy, and way of life. Our members stand ready to support the Ukrainian students and scholars already on their campuses and to support the broader Ukrainian academic community.”