Letter from Associated Students of GCU

October 25, 2023

U.S. Department of Education
Attn: Hon. Secretary Miguel Cardona

400 Maryland Ave, SW
Washington, DC 20202

Dear Mr. Secretary,

As the school year is in full swing here at Grand Canyon University, we could not be any more excited about what the future holds for our students the rest of this semester and semesters to come. My name is Jagaar Halverson and I am the Student Body President at Grand Canyon University alongside Amaya De La Cruz as the Student Body Vice President. GCU is a testament of what higher education can be when students are empowered through our premier United States universities. We would like to share with you the qualities that make GCU not only our home away from home but also the story that GCU is carrying for our students. As well, we would like to extend a warm invitation to you to witness firsthand our remarkable community.

Grand Canyon University is the fastest growing university in the country and our story in the last fifteen years is one of significant accomplishment and community. When you walk around campus and ask “Why did you choose GCU?” to one of our students, nine out of ten will respond with “because of the community”. It is truly a bedrock of our campus. We also have a deep commitment to affordable education that is reflected in the fact that we have not raised tuition for our students in fifteen years. The burden of student loans is a significant concern for today’s students, and we have taken exceptional pride in alleviating the financial stress for our students.

One of our key trademarks of the student experience here at GCU is the positive environment and exceptional quality of education we offer. Our diverse student body consists of majority out-of-state students. This is a testament to the reaching appeal of our education. We are proud of the fact that our education not only serves us in the classroom but also equips us to be stewards of the community that we have been blessed to be a part of. GCU provides us with the skills and knowledge that is needed to thrive in our world.

Transparency is a hallmark tenet here at our university and has allowed Amaya and I to put our full trust in the institution. In fact, we consistently hear feedback from students and parents that state how happy they are that they knew their Admissions Counselor on a personal level. We believe in being honest about our finances, programs, policies, and future plans. This fosters a sense of further community, trust, and commitment to the success of our student body and the professors that educate us.

Another feature of our university is the tight-knit relationships students, including ourselves, form with our professors. GCU has fostered a community where professors genuinely care about the success of their students and offer mentorship as we go through the biggest transition period in our lives. Our professors are not only educators in the classroom but rather facilitators, giving us the connections and insight to be properly prepared for our future endeavors.

We would like to extend an invitation to you to visit our campus in Phoenix, where our winter weather is unmatched. It would be an honor of a lifetime for us to show you and for you to experience firsthand the community that Grand Canyon University has set into place and witness the impact that we are making on our students along with the city. Alternatively, we would be more than willing to travel to Washington DC to meet with you personally and discuss how this university has shaped a boy from Iowa and a girl from California’s life along with the lives of our close to our 26,000, on ground, student population. Our story at GCU is one that aligns with the United States and your goals in making the education system affordable, equitable, and stable for all student’s.

We believe that GCU embodies the principles of excellence of education in the United States. One of affordability, transparency, personal mentorship, and faith that are all essential tenants of higher education in our nation. We relish the opportunity to connect with you and share more about the journey that GCU has taken all of its students on.

Thank you for your attention to this letter. We look forward to the possibility of meeting you and discussing the future of education in the United States and how we can be a part of it.

Associated Students of Grand Canyon University

Jagaar Halverson

Student Body President

Grand Canyon University

Amaya De La Cruz

Student Body Vice President

Grand Canyon University

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