Gluesenkamp Perez Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Improve Awareness of Career and Technical Education Programs

Jul 24, 2023

Last week, Congresswoman Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (D-WA-03) and Congressman Roger Williams (R-TX-25) introduced the Student Debt Alternative and CTE Awareness Act. This legislation encourages more Americans to pursue Career and Technical Education paths and to consider the financial obligations that come with a 4-year degree.

The bill will require the Department of Education to publish information on the Office of Federal Student Aid website regarding general CTE information, CTE programs in all 50 states, and Perkins funding. Additionally, the FAFSA application must include a one-page summary about CTE programs and how they are a viable alternative to a 4-year degree and requires applicants to sign an acknowledgment box before starting their FAFSA application. 

“Success shouldn’t be defined by having a college degree. The trades provide good-paying jobs that are essential to communities,” said Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez. “We need to make sure that students are fully informed of career and technical education programs so they can make the choice that’s right for them, and my bipartisan bill with Chairman Williams makes that possible.”

“Today, I proudly introduced bipartisan legislation that will increase participation in the technical fields through improved awareness of alternatives to traditional higher education opportunities,” said Congressman Roger Williams. “The Student Debt Alternative and CTE Awareness Act would require the Department of Education to inform prospective college students of the benefits of CTE, before they finalize student loans and commit to a university. Costly 4-year degrees create burdensome financial obligations and saddles students with decades of debt, whereas CTE programs reduce education times to 6-24 months for a fraction of the cost. Skilled technicians make extraordinary contributions to the economy, and without them, the American people would not have critical services that we too often take for granted. America is in critical need of skilled workers – plumbers, electricians, mechanics, and countless other skilled professions. These professionals are the lifeblood of our economy.”

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