Duncan discussed the DREAM Act in relation to the President’s 2020 goal for America to once again be the country with the highest proportion of college graduates, pointing out that students served by the DREAM Act will help grow our workforce and fill shortages in STEM jobs and other high-demand fields.
He called higher education “an economic growth engine and a ticket to a middle-class lifestyle,” and outlined the many benefits of attending college, including higher earnings and by extension, tax revenue; lower unemployment, and greater likelihood to vote and do volunteer work.
In his testimony, Duncan also dispelled several misconceptions about the DREAM Act: it does not create an amnesty program with an easy path to citizenship; it will not affect the availability of federal student loans or Pell Grants for citizens, or create incentives for an increase in undocumented immigration.
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