NAICU Washington Update

Introduction by Barbara K. Mistick

September 02, 2022

Dear Colleagues,

As we gear up for the Labor Day weekend and make plans to celebrate and pay tribute to American workers, here at NAICU we continue to have our eyes focused on the activities of Congress and the Biden Administration. We find ourselves in that two-month period heading into the Congressional midterm elections where Members of Congress are spending more time in their districts and states working on their campaigns.

However, several important pieces of business remain that we may see action on this fall. The October 1 deadline to pass a federal budget for FY 2023 is fast approaching, and with none of the 12 appropriations bills finished, Congress is expected to pass a continuing resolution to keep the federal government open through at least the elections. From the Administration, we are awaiting the forthcoming overtime rules from the Department of Labor and free speech regulations from the Department of Education.

With the FDA approval of additional COVID booster vaccines for people under age 50, we will also be watching for updated guidance from the CDC on the rollout of the next vaccines in the higher education space.

We will provide details on these and other issues as they advance on Capitol Hill and within the Administration.

In other news, yesterday you should have received an email announcing that registration is now open for NAICU’s 2023 Annual Meeting & Advocacy Day. Taking place February 5-8, 2023, here in Washington, DC, the meeting is the premier policy and advocacy event for private, nonprofit higher education leaders.

Throughout the meeting, we will highlight strategies private, nonprofit colleges and universities are employing to support students and communities, provide in-depth analysis of the policy and regulatory challenges and opportunities the sector is facing, and offer the chance to talk to and hear from policy makers and higher education experts.

I hope you will add the annual meeting to your schedule of events for next year. If you register before December 2, you will receive an “early bird” discount.

This week’s Washington Update covers the great news on the signing by President Biden of the Ensuring the Best Schools for Veterans Act, which fixes the issues many were having regarding the 85/15 rule for student veterans. The issue also provides additional details on the final rule on DACA issued by the Department of Homeland Security.


  • The Department of Education released a memo regarding the Administration’s authority to cancel $10,000 in student loan debt for borrowers making up to $125,000, and $20,000 for borrowers who are Pell Grant recipients making up to $125,000. The memo cites the HEROES Act of 2003 as the main authority for providing this level of debt relief. Conservatives have already begun to express concerns about the Administration’s student loan debt forgiveness proposal, and court action is likely to take place. Applications are expected to be available in October for borrowers to seek debt relief.
  • To help address the teacher shortage school districts are facing across the country, the White House announced public-private partnerships with hiring agencies, states, and schools to help fill vacancies. At the same time, the Departments of Education and Labor issued a call-to-action to highlight apprenticeships for teaching, and Education Secretary Miguel Cardona called on institutions of higher education to play an important role in increasing the number of teacher candidates prepared to enter the profession. Secretary Cardona is asking colleges and universities to help increase capacity in their teacher preparation programs, adopt Grow You Own programs in partnership with local school districts, and work with state and federal agencies to establish Registered Apprenticeship Programs for the teaching profession in their state.
  • The American College Health Association (ACHA), in conjunction with ACE, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the White House, held a webinar this week focused on preparing college campuses for the Monkeypox virus and COVID-19, and highlighting the potential impact these health issues could have on higher education and campus communities. ACHA also created tools for institutions, including a Monkeypox Update for Institutions of Higher Education, and a compilation of web-based resources that accompanied the webinar.
Double Pell

“For 50 years, the Pell Grant has opened the doors to higher education and a better life for millions of students. Now, we have the opportunity to expand access to college and invest in the next generation of Ohioans. It’s time to #DoublePell.”

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH)

“As the first person in my family to graduate from college, I know how important Pell Grants are for students to realize their goal of a higher education. Pell Grants provide critical support to the students who need it most. I’m proud of the bipartisan work we’ve been able to do in Congress to strengthen the Pell Grant program, like raising the maximum award amount and reinstating year-round Pell.”

Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO)

Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.
President, NAICU

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