This blog post was originally published as an op-ed in Inside Higher Ed on September 6, 2012. To see the original article, please click here.
No doubt, students must take personal responsibility to succeed in college. How hard students work often defines which ones acquire the knowledge needed to complete classes and earn a degree and which ones do not. Indeed, the hardest workers are probably the ones who are more likely to be walking across a stage this month with diploma in hand.
For more than 60 years, the US has demonstrated its commitment to expanding access to college. As a result of the GI Bill, Pell Grants, and other federal and state initiatives, an astonishing 68% of high school graduates now enroll in college (according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics), not to mention the millions of displaced workers and other adults seeking to improve their lives