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News Maryland Carroll County Westminster

Westminster junior discusses college ratings with U.S. Secretary of Ed

While Carroll County students were leaving school Friday and beginning their weekend, Westminster High School junior Jeremy Price was in Washington discussing college affordability and ratings with U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

"It was definitely an excellent opportunity," Price said Monday.

Price was one of 11 students from the area, including four Georgetown University seniors, to meet with Duncan and his staff for a roundtable discussion on education topics, such as a new college performance ratings system.

The roundtable, part of Duncan's Student Voices Series, is intended to engage students in discussions around areas of interest for the Department of Education, while at the same time using their perspective to help increase connections between Education Department policies and student needs.

Price said students met with Duncan and members of his staff for about two hours discussing college financial aid, information available to students when researching schools, and how Advanced Placement courses transfer to college credit.

During the discussion, Price said he suggested an online directory be created to compare college statistics, such as graduation rates or success of students after graduation, to clear up some confusion surrounding college decisions for students.

"If I have ideas that I would like to share and other students too, I think it's imperative that we're able to get what we know out so we can have some ability to affect resources for us and make a difference for our cause," Price said. "It was really great to see Secretary Duncan's support and the other advisors' support of what we were trying to say."

Price was chosen for the unique opportunity because of his involvement with the Carroll County Student Government Association and the Maryland Association of Student Councils.

He serves as the state legislative affairs coordinator with the Maryland Association of Student Councils.

Although Price said he wasn't entirely sure what to expect from the meeting, he said he did enjoy it.

As for meeting Duncan, Price said he was an "awesome guy."

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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