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Councilmember Brown Wins National Idea Challenge Competition

Taijuan Moorman Taijuan Moorman Councilmember Brown Wins National Idea Challenge CompetitionCity Council President Pro Tem Elizabeth Brown at a press conference and public hearing, Dec. 7, 2018. Photo via City of Columbus website.
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City Council President Pro Tem Elizabeth Brown has been announced as one of the winners of the 2019 New Ideas Challenge by national policymaker network NewDEAL. The competition was among state and local leaders, and Brown’s idea was one of five winners.

Brown’s submission won in the “Expanding Access to Education” category and will address access to affordable college and career education for young people. Called ACCESS (Affordable College & Career Education Starts with Saving), the program will place participants ages 14-24 in job roles to receive professional development, mentorship and financial education.

Some eligible youth will also have access to an Individual Development Account, where up to $500 in savings will be matched 8:1 with a combination of city, private and federal dollars, for a total of $4,500. Participants can use the funds for an educational expense, including earning a certificate, seeking a four-year degree or learning a skilled trade.

“I am grateful to NewDEAL for recognizing the ACCESS program and for highlighting our efforts to level the playing field for Columbus families by promoting savings for post-secondary education,” said Pro Tem Brown in a press release. “I hope our program and all of the other nominees and winners will inspire similar initiatives across the country as this important work continues.”

“Pro Tem Brown’s efforts to expand access to affordable education should inform policymakers in Washington and across the country who want to rise above the partisan fray to move the nation in the right direction,” said NewDEAL CEO Debbie Cox Bultan.

For more information on ACCESS, visit www.newdealleaders.org/access.

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