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Higher Education Commissioner Valerie Lewis retires
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Outgoing Comissioner of Higher Education, Valerie Lewis: Photo by Ryan CassellaOutgoing Comissioner of Higher Education, Valerie Lewis: Photo by Ryan Cassella
After seven years on the job, Valerie Lewis retired on Thursday as Connecticut’s Commissioner of Higher Education. Its been a time of tremendous change. During the past seven years, enrollment at state colleges and universities has jumped, Connecticut’s student population has become more diverse, and tuition costs have skyrocketed.

Speaking on WNPR’s Where We Live, Valerie Lewis says access and affordability are the biggest challenges. "..because our cost growth is outpacing the dollars that people are putting in their pockets. That’s a problem in terms of thinking about serving more people, helping more people find those futures and simultaneously figuring out how to do that efficiently."

Lewis says colleges and universities will need to work more closely with high schools to be sure graduates are academically ready for the rigor of college work. Former Democratic State Senator Michael Meotti will succeed Lewis as Connecticut’s next Higher Education Commissioner. .