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NICD CommonSense American Poll Shows Bipartisan Support for Workforce Pell Grants

By February 16, 2024April 19th, 2024CommonSense News

The National Institute for Civil Discourse (NICD) released the findings of its latest nationwide polling through CommonSense American, revealing an unprecedented level of support among Americans for the Workforce Pell program. The results underscore a growing consensus across the political spectrum regarding the importance of access to education and training for all Americans.

Panelists speak about the importance of Workforce Pell Grants

The Workforce Pell program, which aims to provide financial assistance for non-traditional students pursuing vocational and technical education, has gained remarkable traction among citizens nationwide, according to the NICD’s comprehensive survey conducted over the past month.

At a public event releasing this survey, Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Ranking Member Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA) celebrated NICD’s latest polling results that show overwhelming support among Americans for Workforce Pell.

The recent survey data provided by the NICD is welcome news and shows the environment is ripe for transformative changes to skills-based learning. With 10 million unfilled jobs, employers across all industries are eager to find qualified workers. Job creators find that skills-based credentials can effectively prepare workers. But many of these short-term programs are out of reach for low-income students.

Virginia Foxx (R-NC)

Key findings from the poll include:

  • Eighty-seven percent of respondents expressed strong support for expanding Pell Grant eligibility to cover workforce training programs, irrespective of age or previous educational background.
  • Ninety-two percent of respondents believe that investing in vocational and technical education is crucial for bolstering the nation’s workforce and ensuring economic competitiveness in an increasingly globalized market.
  • Seventy-nine percent of respondents indicated that they would be more likely to support political candidates who advocate for policies aimed at expanding access to vocational training and education.

The overwhelming consensus revealed by the NICD’s polling highlights a bipartisan commitment to addressing the evolving needs of the American workforce. With rapid technological advancements and shifts in the labor market, there is a growing recognition of the necessity to equip individuals with the skills and training required to thrive in a dynamic economy.

Commenting on the poll results, Keith Allred, executive director of NICD, stated, “These findings underscore the widespread recognition that investing in workforce training and education is not just a matter of economic policy, but a fundamental component of fostering social mobility and equitable opportunity for all Americans. The resounding support for the Workforce Pell program reflects a shared commitment to empowering individuals to pursue fulfilling careers and contribute meaningfully to society.”

NICD Executive Director Keith Allred

The NICD’s latest polling data serves as a compelling call to action for policymakers at all levels of government to prioritize initiatives aimed at expanding access to vocational and technical education. By investing in programs like Workforce Pell, policymakers have an opportunity to bridge the skills gap, enhance economic resilience, and promote social cohesion across communities nationwide. This legislation has long been an area of bipartisan interest raised particularly by the landmark 1983 “A Nation at Risk” report, but it has previously failed to move from proposed legislation to law.

For more information on the NICD’s polling results and its efforts to promote civil discourse and bipartisan collaboration, please visit our CommonSense American program with examples from recent polls and see their legislative impact.