D.C. update: Rosenberg at the White House, Pell Grant increase

On Jan. 16, President Mark B. Rosenberg attended the White House Summit on College Affordability – bringing international attention to FIU’s innovative initiatives and cutting-edge research.

Morehouse College President Dr. John Silvanus Wilson, Jr.;  President Mark B. Rosenberg; and Franklin and Marshall College President Daniel Porterfield

Morehouse College President Dr. John Silvanus Wilson, Jr.; President Mark B. Rosenberg; and Franklin and Marshall College President Daniel Porterfield

Rosenberg was among a select group of university presidents convened at the White House Summit. The conversation focused on incentivizing collaboration between K-12 school systems and universities with the goal of connecting low-income students with universities. The White House also released a report on future initiatives to increase college opportunity for low-income students. In addition to suggesting the replication of FIU’s successful Education Effect, Rosenberg announced plans to expand efforts at a second high school.

“It was good to showcase strategies we are carrying out with Superintendent Alberto Carvalho’s team at M-DCPS and with the generous support of private partners to keep the American dream alive.  We know this model can be adopted and incentivized in other urban environments because it works,” said Rosenberg.

In 2011, FIU partnered with Miami-Dade Schools and Miami Northwestern Senior High in Liberty City to meet the needs of the students and the community. The partnership, known as the Education Effect, has helped Miami Northwestern Senior High go from  a “D/F” school to an “A” school; graduation rates have increased from 64 percent to 80 percent.

FIU hopes to replicate this success at Booker T. Washington Senior High , one of Miami’s oldest schools and a historically ranked “D/F” school. The goal is to promote a 100 percent graduation rate, improve teaching and learning, and increase parental and community engagement.

Budget deal approved, including Pell Grant increase

Critical this week, the Omnibus Appropriations Bill for the 2014 fiscal year was completed and maximum Pell is now expected to be $5,730, an $85 increase since last year’s maximum. The bill also includes $75 million for the Administration’s “First in the World” initiative to reward individual colleges that encourage productivity and efficiency, and $20 million set aside for minority serving institutions of higher education. This agreement averts another government shutdown.

Advancing Worlds Ahead research

Atorod Azizinamini, chair of the FIU’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and director of FIU’s Accelerated Bridge Construction University Transportation Center (ABC-UTC), was in D.C. this week for the Transportation Research Board annual meeting. Azizinamini met with the South Florida Congressional delegation and discussed the university’s foremost role in accelerated bridge construction.

FIU’s Federal Relations team attended this week’s White House Education Datapalooza, which featured new technology on how to improve college completion and provide for simpler ways of navigating through financial aid. The team also visited the Inter-American Development Bank for a panel discussion and documentary screening on the lack of water in Haiti, and what the government and private sector is doing to address the problem. FIU’s GLOWS initiative has a strong history of helping foreign countries manage their water sustainability.

Back in Miami, 30 ambassadors from all over the globe came to FIU’s Wall of Wind hurricane research center to see and experience the force of the largest and only Category 5 Hurricane simulator.


Alumni Annette Ravenau, press secretary of Enroll America; Delia Ravenau; and Jose Parra, Sen. Harry Reid’s communication director, at White House ceremony for the Miami Heat.

Panthers spotted

Also visiting D.C. this week, alumni Marcus Bright, leader of the National Action Network’s Education for a Better America; FIU Foundation board Member Carlos Duart, CEO of CDR Maguire; and the gregarious DJ Irie, who was in town for the White House championship celebration for the Miami Heat.

-Juliet Haydar

For pictures of this week’s happenings and more information:

Twitter:  @fiudc

Facebook:  FIU Governmental Relations




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