Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education

CPE president outlines the benefits of higher education in virtual commencement address

October 08, 2020

Why does higher education matter? President Aaron Thompson, head of the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education, delivered an unequivocal answer last week to students at Somerset Community College's commencement ceremony.

"I believe that higher education unlocks the human potential, that college gives us the time and opportunity to explore our interests, to train for a career that challenges and inspires us. And it gives us a greater sense of meaning and purpose in life," he told attendees at the virtual event.

The full video of his address is posted above.

Thompson launched CPE's #HigherEdMatters campaign last year, driving more than 2,400 miles to visit campuses and communities across the state. For those who missed the tour, Thompson's commencement address offers an excellent primer into the critical importance of higher education in Kentucky.

He debunks two common myths: college is not worth the cost, and not everyone is cut out for postsecondary education. He also underscores the enormous benefits of a college degree.

"Higher education is the most effective tool for all of us to combat inter-generational poverty, to create wealth, to build social capital, to improve our overall health and quality of life, and to preserve – believe it or not – the quality of our great democracy," he said.

Check out the full video and help become an ambassador for higher education.

Last Updated: 7/23/2021