Andrew P. Kelly is a resident scholar in education policy studies at AEI. His research focuses on higher education policy, innovation, financial aid reform, and the politics of education policy. Previously, he was a research assistant at AEI, where his work focused on the preparation of school leaders, collective bargaining in public schools, and the politics of education. His research has appeared in the American Journal of Education, Teachers College Record, Educational Policy, Policy Studies Journal, and Education Next, as well as popular outlets such as Education Week, Inside Higher Education, Forbes, The Atlantic, National Affairs, The Weekly Standard, and The Huffington Post. He is co-editor of "Getting to Graduation: The Completion Agenda in Higher Education" (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2012), "Carrots, Sticks, and the Bully Pulpit: Lessons from A Half-Century of Federal Efforts to Improve America's Schools" (Harvard Education Press, 2011), and "Reinventing Higher Education: The Promise of Innovation" (Harvard Education Press, 2011). In 2011, Mr. Kelly was named one of 16 "Next Generation Leaders" in education policy by the "Policy Notebook" blog on Education Week.
This research conference will push past tired discussions to explore opportunities for a more fundamental rethinking of the way aid is designed and delivered. At this conference, America’s foremost thinkers on financial aid reform will discuss 10 new pieces of research on how innovations in financial aid policy can create a more effective and sustainable system.
On May 1, millions of Americans made the second-largest investment decision of their lives: they chose a college. For many, it will be a sure-fire ticket to the middle class. For others, this decision will lead to a crippling mixture of student loan debt and labor market uncertainty.
The first step toward making our student aid system more sustainable and effective is to acknowledge, as fully as possible, what each program costs us each year, and whether those dollars are well-spent. Until then, we'll continue to make policy based on politics and deadlines, not sound accounting and common sense.