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Trending State Issues in Higher Education

Many higher education policy issues are developed or impacted by state lawmakers across the country. NACUBO is tracking many of these legislative trends, how they arise in different states, and how they may ultimately interact with federal lawmaking efforts.


Megan Schneider

Senior Director, Government Affairs


State Trend Policy Briefs

Student-Athlete Compensation

States have led the charge in passing legislation that allows student-athletes to be compensated by external entities for use of their name, image, and likeness related to their participation in college and university athletics. How do these state laws interact with federal concerns? How has the NCAA responded?

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Free College Programs

Many state and local governments have created "free college" programs, often referred to as Promise Programs. These programs differ widely across the country in structure, funding source, participant eligibility, and other critical features. What do some of these programs look like and is there a chance for a federal "free college" program?

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Data Privacy and Protection

As students, lawmakers, and the general public become increasingly concerned with issues of data privacy and data protection, how are states drafting laws to respond? With many data privacy concerns arising from digital platforms that cross state lines, is there a role for the federal government to play?

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NACUBO Materials

Recommended Materials

  • SHEEO State Higher Education Finance Project. An annual report from the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association that examines the trends, context, and consequences of state higher education funding decisions.
  • WICHE Knocking At the College Door Project. An annual project from the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education that provides projections of high school graduates by state and includes breakouts by various student demographics.
  • NCAA Taking Action Name, Image, and Likeness. The NCAA's compilation of its resources, ongoing action, and projected timelines related to student-athlete compensation for their name, image, and likeness.

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State funding has only partially recovered from the Great Recession in most state.

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