Washington, D.C. — The Center for American Progress announced today that upon leaving his dual roles as acting assistant secretary for postsecondary education and deputy assistant secretary for postsecondary policy, planning, and innovation at the U.S. Department of Education, David A. Bergeron will join the organization as Vice President for Higher Education. At CAP, David will spearhead the organization’s postsecondary policy agenda that is built on the belief that high-quality and affordable postsecondary education is key to rebuilding the middle class and advancing national competitiveness.
At the Department of Education, David has acted as the education secretary’s chief advisor on higher education issues. In this role, David is responsible for the more than 60 federal postsecondary education programs administered by the Office of Postsecondary Education, or OPE, that provide nearly $3 billion annually to institutions of higher education and community-based organizations. He is also responsible for legislative, regulatory, and other policies for the Federal Student Aid programs that generate more than $160 billion annually in financial aid to more than 25 million students enrolled at public and private postsecondary institutions.
OPE provides financial support to developing and minority institutions and programs that prepare disadvantaged students for successful completion of college. OPE programs also promote the study of foreign languages and international affairs and exchange activities. In addition, OPE recognizes regional and national accrediting agencies, so that they in turn may qualify institutions to receive federal financial aid.
David has served as acting assistant secretary for OPE since July 2012 and since 2009 has served first as acting deputy assistant secretary before being named permanently to that position in 2011. David has more than 30 years of service in the Department of Education. His many accomplishments include leading key policy groups working on the reauthorizations of the Higher Education Act and numerous budget-reconciliation bills, most notably the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, which resulted in the elimination of the bank-based student-loan programs and the transition to a system of federal direct loans. The savings resulting from this transition have gone to increase funding for the federal Pell Grant program.
In addition, David has managed the negotiated rulemaking process that has most recently resulted in the publication of the Pay As You Earn and program-integrity/gainful-employment regulations for the student-aid programs. David has also conducted research on market-based approaches to loan subsidies and has led the development of high-quality tools to assist students and families in making informed choices about postsecondary education programs, including the recently released College Scorecard and Financial Aid Shopping Sheet.
David has collaborated with other federal agencies—including the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, Defense, and Veterans Affairs, as well as the National Economic Council—to improve access to postsecondary education and employment-training programs. Personally, David is proudest of the opportunity he had to lead the Education Department’s highly praised response to students and institutions of higher education in the Gulf Coast region affected by Hurricane Katrina. He ensured that the students could use their federal aid to enroll at other institutions for the fall semester and then return to their home institutions for the winter term.