You no doubt saw plenty of pictures this weekend from college graduations. Proud parents and students had a lot to be happy about. But soon the reality of all the student debt is going to come crashing down. You hear many presidential candidates talk about various forms of free college for all. While some of those plans are probably just lip service on the issue, Linn County is actually stepping up with a plan of its own.

Linn County Supervisor Stacey Walker announced plans in his 2019 State of the County address for a new program that would guarantee at least two years of higher education for students who may not be able to afford it. Walker says the program is in its early stages and he is still talking with education experts, community leaders, and others to see if the project can be accomplished.

Walker noted a report from the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance that said 82% of responding companies are finding it hard to find qualified job applicants. Walker says the new program could help Linn County businesses shrink job shortages and help businesses find qualified workers. He noted that ideally, the program would be paid for by both the public and private sectors without putting a burden on taxpayers.

Walker would like the program to be up and running in Linn County within the next three to five years.


[via KCRG]

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