Dr. Bill Flores, Provost/CEO and Associate Vice Chancellor of the Antioch University Santa Barbara campus, will convene the 22nd Annual National Capitol Forum on Hispanic Higher Education, April 24-25, 2017 in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Flores serves as Chair of the Governing Board of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU). The Governing Board will hold a reception and dinner on April 23rd. Dr. Flores will facilitate the opening plenary session on Department of Education Priorities and Accreditation Issues in Higher Education on Monday, April 24.
The Forum will include sessions with the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, Elizabeth DeVos, as well as leadership from several federal agencies, including Beatriz Ceja-Williams, Director of the Hispanic Serving Institutions Division of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Post-Secondary Education, and Dr. Irma Lawrence, National Program Leader of HSIs Education Grants Program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
The Forum will hear about and discuss higher education policy of the Trump Administration and the 115th Congress, including Pell Grants, proposed cuts to higher education research and support, and the proposed Bridge Act which would provide protections to DREAMers covered under the DACA Executive Order of President Barack Obama. Higher education representatives will visit local congressional representatives to educate them about HACU and higher education priorities.
“HACU is the leading advocate for Hispanic and low-income students and was the first higher education organization to support the DREAM Act to provide higher educational opportunities for undocumented students who came to this country as children. This year’s Forum comes at a critical time for higher education,” said Dr. Flores. “President Trump’s budget plan, if adopted, would reduce funding for Pell Grants and SEOG, eliminate TRIO programs, threaten funding for Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs), undermine DACA protections for undocumented students, and drastically reduce research funding. Participants will be able to raise their voices and be heard by Congressional representatives and agency directors. We expect a great turnout and active participation by our member institutions.”
Dr. Flores will also participate and speak at the closing reception on Capitol Hill, “Honoring the Champions of Higher Education in Congress, which will be held on Tuesday, April 25, at the Capitol Visitors Center.