“Too many young people and their families are being held back by the unaffordability of a college education. Yet our leaders have sat by as the cost of college spiraled out of control. We need a governor who is committed to lowering the cost of college and ending the brain drain from our state.”
Phil understands that we don’t get our economy right without getting higher education right. Sadly, New Jersey exports more high school seniors than any other state in the nation. Those students that do stay are forced to stomach some of the nation’s highest tuitions and fees, resulting in an average student debt burden of nearly $33,000. At the same time, Trenton continues to slash higher education budgets all while handing lavish tax breaks to large corporations. These shortsighted decisions have forced working families to shoulder an increasing share of the cost of achieving the American Dream.
Phil believes that if we want to keep our state economically competitive and successful, our leading export can no longer be high school seniors. He is committed to making college affordable for every New Jersey student. Specifically, he will:
- Increase state aid to institutions of higher education, including community colleges, to lower tuitions and fees.
- Expand access to community colleges for high school students and create new vocational training programs to provide alternative pathways to success.
- Provide loan forgiveness to STEM graduates working in STEM jobs in the state and create incentives for private sector employers to provide student loan relief as a core employee benefit.
- Help New Jerseyans stuck with student loans at above-market rates by offering state-based refinancing at lower rates through a new public bank.