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Feb 18, 2017 08:57 AM EST

DeVos Praises Community College In Her First Public Higher Ed Event

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The new Education Secretary Betsy DeVos highlighted the key role of community colleges in terms of promoting vocational and technical education during her first public speech last Thursday. DeVos speech took 8 and a half minutes, very brief but a well-prepared speech, where she praised community colleges highlighting their significance to the plan of Trump for the 100 days of his administration, The Chronicle of Higher Education reported.

DeVos said that the plan is about the expansion of vocational and technical training which are provided best by community colleges. She also said that community colleges are less costly, flexible and are excellent at equipping job seekers with the skills that the economy needs.

She highlighted that community colleges are an American national asset and labelled them as "nimble, inclusive and entrepreneurial, according to News OK. She also added that these are the colleges that are needed for economic development both locally and regionally as they help identify and close the skills gap between employers as well as job seekers. And this is going to be a helpful step in helping American business and industries grow and expand.

DeVos was confirmed as the Education Secretary last week after a controversial nomination battle which required Vice President Mike Pence to cast a tie-breaking vote.

Some of the audience said that she sounded encouraging and knowledgeable as she addressed the community college leaders. Ruth Purcell, executive director of the BC3 Education Foundation, a nonprofit organization that provides funding for Butler Community College, in Pennsylvania said that DeVos was well prepared for the event and that she sounded rather encouraging especially for them who were more concerned during the hearing.

DeVos also spoke of the importance of community colleges in their collaboration with the public schools and she briefly acknowledged American Association of Community Colleges' legislative priorities, but did not give much details on the Department of Education's position.

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