Key Policy Letters from the Education Secretary or Deputy Secretary
March 22, 2011
Archived Information

March 22, 2011

Dear Governors:

Even during this period of profound resource challenges, governors armed with facts about what works in promoting college completion can do much to encourage our public and private systems of higher education to make cost-effective reforms that will help many, many more students succeed.  I am writing to offer the U.S. Department of Education’s assistance and my personal commitment to help you and your Cabinet in developing and highlighting no-cost and low-cost policies that can increase college completion rates and in turn help better secure the economic future of your state.

President Obama has set a goal that by 2020 the United States of America will once again have the best educated workforce in the world. This is not and should not be viewed as a partisan goal.  It is a goal that all Americans can rally around.  I encourage you to work collaboratively with higher education leaders in your state, faculty, philanthropic foundations, and the many others who are increasingly interested in promoting heightened levels of college success even at a time of extraordinary resource challenges.

The U.S. Department of Education has prepared the enclosed College Completion Tool Kit to give you and your advisors a head start on organizing your state’s college completion strategies and policies.  Please feel free to distribute this guide, which is also available in an electronic form, as widely as possible.  Later this year, our Department will further highlight this issue by posting each state’s college completion goals and strategies on our Web site.

If you are interested in focusing attention on postsecondary education success by hosting a College Completion Summit in your state this year, members of our senior team will be available upon request.  I would be pleased to highlight your attention to this issue.  It’s my firm belief that college completion is central to our nation’s and your state’s economic future.

  Arne Duncan



College Completion Tool Kitdownload files PDF 1.79MB

College Completion Tool Kit Insertdownload files PDF 3.16MB

Last Modified: 02/16/2017