Pence Calls For On-Time College Graduation

Only 28 percent of Hoosier students pursuing a bachelor’s degree finish in four years.

Pence

Photo: Brandon Smith/IPBS

Pence gathers Thursday with a group of students to unveil his plan in increase the number of college students who finish their degree on time.

Mike Pence says, if elected governor, he would push for students to graduate on time from college by incentivizing both students and schools.

Only 28 percent of Hoosier students pursuing a bachelor’s degree finish in four years. That puts Indiana 40th in the nation in on-time completion rate. GOP gubernatorial candidate Mike Pence says his plan to improve that focuses on several sources.

“We know Indiana can do better,” he says. “But it will take shared commitment from the state, our colleges and universities and from students and families themselves to get the job done.”

Pence proposes shifting more than eight million dollars from state financial aid funds to performance grants awarded to students who graduate on time. He says he will engage colleges and universities by tying on-time graduation rates to some of the funding they receive from the state. His initiative also includes a change in financial aid requirements.

Students would not only need to achieve a certain GPA to continue receiving financial aid…they must also achieve certain milestones toward degree completion.

Pence says that will require schools to establish a roadmap to degrees that students would follow. The sixth district congressman says he will have to further examine what impact his proposals would have on schools that serve a higher number of non-traditional students.

In a statement, Pence’s opponent John Gregg says Pence lacks credibility on higher education, noting his record in Congress in which he voted against Pell grants.

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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  • Student of Hard knocks

    Thanks a lot Pence. That would mean students like me would never have the funds to finish, and would be punished for having life events that hold us back. In my case my only parent died of a rare cancer. I at the time also had a rare cancer (they are starting to think these two are related). I was so sick! But, I put in for anything I could to try to finish! What is going to happen if you don’t give us a chance to go back after illness? Please don’t punish the sick and poor!

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