RI lawmakers call for more affordable college

Reps. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) and Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) promoted their Middle Class Jumpstart plan on Wednesday, which includes measures to increase access to affordable college.

“The cost of college has become a significant barrier to education for too many Americans,” Langevin said. “Improving collegiate programming at the high school level gives students the leg up they need to both prepare for higher education and also to help offset the expense of college courses.”

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They said making college courses more affordable would help grow and restore the shrinking middle class.

“It’s no secret that a college degree will help put a young adult on the road to success and boost their lifetime earnings,” Cicilline said. “The Democratic ‘Middle Class Jumpstart’ plan will expand access to affordable education for middle class Rhode Islanders to help them succeed later in life.”

Their announcement of the plan came as Rhode Island received a $74,000 federal grant to subsidize low-income students test fees to receive college credits for high school courses. The two other parts of their plan include helping students refinance their college loans to get the new lower rates and to increase access to Pell Grants.