Gallagher Joins Grothman, Steil in Supporting Competency-based Education

June 26, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Last week, Congressman Mike Gallagher, alongside Congressman Bryan Steil, cosponsored Congressman Glenn Grothman’s bill, H.R. 3422, the Competency-based Education (CBE) Act. This legislation would provide universities with the framework they need to deliver a competency-based education to their students. Through CBE programs, students can move through their higher education at their own pace, avoid incurring enormous debt, and move into the workforce as soon as possible.

“In Northeast Wisconsin, we have open jobs in all kinds of fields, but our biggest problem is helping students get the skills to fill them,” said Rep. Gallagher. “Recognizing that a time-based, four-year path to a degree doesn’t work for everyone, the University of Wisconsin system has been a leader in offering students an alternative approach through Competency-based Education. This has given Wisconsinites a way to get into high demand fields on an education path that works for them, and I’m proud to join Rep. Grothman in finding ways we can encourage more states to follow Wisconsin’s lead.”

“Making sure our students receive the best education possible to prepare them as future leaders of the country has long been one of my top priorities,” said Rep. Grothman. “Equally as important is giving students educational options that do not leave them with a mountain of debt. I am excited about CBE programs because they take into account each student’s individual learning style and reward them based on their understanding of course material. Additionally, students often complete courses more quickly, reducing the need to prolong their time taking out loans. The University of Wisconsin has already seen great success from their CBE programs. The problem for other universities is the barriers to entry when setting up the program. My bill provides the framework schools need to set up and expand CBE programs that will be available and effective for the students. I urge my colleagues who don’t know about CBE to learn quickly. CBE programs would be a huge boon to our educational system by producing students who learn more with less debt and get out into the workforce more quickly.”

 “As a former UW Regent, I believe that colleges and universities must innovate to meet the challenges of the 21st century,” said Rep. Steil.  “The Competency-based Education Act will provide schools with flexible education options to help students save money and graduate quickly. Forward-thinking universities, like those in the University of Wisconsin System, can take full advantage of these opportunities and give their students the ability to excel.  I thank Congressman Grothman for his work on this important issue.”

“Competency-based education is vital to helping meet unmet educational needs, especially for adult and other non-traditional learners. It’s why we started the UW Flexible Option and why we’ve created UW Extended Campus,” said Ray Cross, University of Wisconsin System President. “This legislation is vitally important to expanding educational opportunities and helping the University of Wisconsin continue as a national leader in competency-based education. I thank Rep. Grothman for his leadership on this issue.”

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