Arnold Mitchem heads the Council for Opportunity in Education. He says low income, minority, and disabled students are struggling to get college degrees. "Since 2007, 43 states have reduced their education budgets by 40 percent," he says.
To combat this, faculty members from around the country have formed the National Campaign for the Future of Higher Education. Professors from Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, California, and New York launched the initiative at a press conference in Washington, D.C. May 17.
The group believes affordable, quality higher education should be accessible to everyone. The campaign will also be an effort to share information among faculty members as they work on issues including increasing privatization of higher education and higher tuition on their campuses.
Lillian Taiz from California State University says that so far, faculty voices have been missing in the effort to increase equality in education.
"When you're down in the trenches and all of these things are falling on your head, it's really hard to know how to help yourself and how to help your students," she says.
So far campuses from more than 20 states are part of the campaign.