The new initiative was announced on Wednesday by Dr. Jill Biden, the former Second Lady who is also an English professor at Northern Virginia Community College.
“Teaching isn’t just what I do,” Biden told the more than 2,400 Achieving the Dream (ATD) conference attendees who have gathered here for several days to strategize on how best to help students — particularly low-income and students of color —achieve academic success. “It is who I am.”
Biden has long been an advocate and staunch supporter for community colleges. In 2010, she hosted the first ever White House Summit on Community Colleges.
In her talk on Wednesday, Biden pointed to data by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) that note that a growing number of single mothers — 11 percent of all undergraduates — are enrolled in postsecondary institutions but most will not graduate because of the challenges they face as financially independent students who are juggling work, school and parenting.