Representatives Mark Pocan (D-WI) and Louise Slaughter (D-NY) Host Perkins Loan Program Press Conference at Capitol

September 10, 2015 · by mlivolsi · Spark Notes

September 10, 2015

Prepared by: Hannah Allen  (

On September 9, Representatives Pocan and Slaughter hosted a press conference on the Southeast Capitol lawn to call for continuation of the Perkins Loan Program. Congresswoman Slaughter praised the revolving nature of the program and said that higher education would not be possible for 5,000+ student in her district without the assistance of Perkins. It would be “beyond foolish,” Slaughter argued, to allow a program to expire that is so essential to college affordability and that meets congressional demand for “skin in the game” in a sustainable and proven fashion. Paraphrasing poet William Butler Yeats, Slaughter contended that support for Perkins does not “fill the pail,” but rather “lights a fire,” enabling students from middle and low income backgrounds to pursue quality postsecondary opportunities. Congressman Pocan spoke of the benefit that Perkins has afforded to nearly 30,000 Wisconsans, and argued that the continuation of Perkins is an issue that “should have bipartisan support” in Congress as a tool to increase access for students who otherwise would be unable to fund their education. The program’s favorable loan terms and cancellation benefits position it as a wise investment in our nation’s students, the congressman argued. Pocan highlighted the growing support in Congress, noting the resolution, H.Res. 294, expressing support for continuation of the program that is gaining momentum in the House.

Also in attendance were current Perkins recipients from George Washington University, who shared the significant role that Perkins loans played in their ability to achieve a quality college education that will open professional opportunities for them.

Justin Draeger, President and CEO of the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA), Jon Fansmith of the American Council on Education and Cyndy Littlefield of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) reinforced Representatives Pocan and Slaughter’s call to Congress to continue the Perkins Loan Program and maintain the program’s vital supports for students.

Click here to sign the petition to Save Perkins Now!

Pocan 2 Slaughter DC 2


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