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NEA Leader to Provide Keynote Address at HBCU Faculty Conference in Raleigh

WASHINGTON - October 15, 2014 -

Dr. Kevin Gilbert to discuss NEA’s Degrees Not Debt campaign and the role of HBCU faculty in student success

WHO: Dr. Kevin F. Gilbert, Executive Committee, National Education Association

WHAT: Media/interview opportunities on site or via phone/Skype

WHEN: Keynote address is Friday, October 17, 2014 at approximately 12:00 p.m. EDT

WHEREThe 21st Annual HBCU Faculty Development Network Conference
                 Hilton North Raleigh/Midtown
                 3415 Wake Forest Road
                 Raleigh, North Carolina 37609-7330

WHY: Historically black colleges and universities produce 16 percent of the nation’s black college graduates and 30 percent of U.S. scientists and engineers with Ph.Ds. As lawmakers call for more college graduates for the jobs of the future, it’s clear that HBCUs will be key to higher education in the 21st century. They educate the students who look like the changing face of America—non-white, non-traditional, and not-rich students.

Yet several HBCUs have closed their doors in recent years due to financial issues. The 2011 changes to federal Parent PLUS loan eligibility was a significant blow: The United Negro College Fund (UNCF) estimates that HBCUs lost $155 million in PLUS funds (a 35 percent reduction) in 2012-2013 alone. NEA has advocated for restoration of eligibility to those families.

Dr. Kevin Gilbert will be discussing these and other issues with attendees of the 21st annual HBCU Faculty Development Network Conference in Raleigh, NC, on October 17, 2014. Dr. Gilbert will provide an overview of the National Education Association’s current work at HBCUs to lift up the voices of HBCU faculty and students and mobilize for student success. He will also discuss NEA’s student debt awareness campaign, NEA’s Degrees Not Debt, and how it can help HBCU faculty and students to manage their often overwhelming student loan debt. To set up an interview with Dr. Gilbert, please contact Sara Robertson at

About the Conference
The Network’s annual conference promotes effective teaching and student learning strategies through a variety of collaborative activities that focus on faculty enhancement. These collaborative activities are designed to make a connection between teaching, research and service. The conference also facilitates collaboration among faculty and administrators to share individual achievements and make meaningful connections in meeting students’ academic and professional needs.

Follow NEA at
The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators, and students preparing to become teachers.

CONTACT: Sara Robertson
Phone 202-230-8978