Senator Patty Murray assured t

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he Yakima Valley’s crown jewel of higher education got some high profile exposure this week when Heritage University President Dr. John Bassett testified before a senate committee in our Nation’s capital.  Bassett’s testimony was intended to strengthen support for minority serving institutions, including Heritage.  Dr. Bassett and four other educational leaders from around the country spoke before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions (HELP) hearing titled “Strengthening Minority Serving Institutions: Best Practices and Innovations for Student Success.”

Senator Patty Murray (WA) introduced Dr. Bassett to her colleagues on the committee acknowledging Heritage University’s efforts to prepare its students for academic and workplace success, and creating a skilled workforce which is crucial to economic vitality.

President Bassett shared Heritage’s mission to provide high quality education to the Yakima Valley, which historically has a low level of education attainment, but also has young people with high levels of intelligence and potential.

He also spoke about the changes made at Heritage during his four years here, which include increasing the intentional advising and tutoring of all students; encouraging students to identify an area of study sooner as students who have not identified a goal are more likely to drop out and raising expectations of students who have historically been held down.