NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – New Mexico Higher Education Secretary Stephanie M. Rodriguez joined U.S. Department of Education Secretary Miguel Cardona and senior Biden-Harris administration officials in Washington D.C. on July 26 for the National Summit on Equal Opportunity in Higher Education.

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Rodriguez participated in the panel discussion, “Committing to Educational Opportunity for All Students,” to discuss New Mexico’s work in creating access to higher education for diverse students through the Opportunity Scholarship and other initiatives. She also spoke about her family’s lineage as Mexican migrant farmworkers, the diversity of New Mexico’s population, and the impact of higher education on her own life and career.  

“I am really proud of the fact that in New Mexico, we are the land of tuition-free college… There is no wrong door to higher education in our state, whether that is at a two-year college, a four-year college, a high-demand certificate, an associate degree, or a bachelor’s degree,” Rodriguez said.

She also highlighted the state’s investments in student success through initiatives on food and housing security, mental and behavioral health, and access to child care for parenting students.

Rodriguez was joined on the panel by University of California President Michael V. Drake, Brown University President Christina H. Paxson, University of California, Davis Chancellor Gary S. May, and City Colleges of Chicago Chancellor Juan Salgado.   

The full summit video and transcript are available here from the U.S. Department of Education. The panel featuring Rodriguez begins at the 36-minute mark.