The Washington Monthly is helping spearhead an interesting event today. Here are the details:

Barack Obama has done a remarkable amount to protect college students from corporate abuse — by cracking down on predatory for-profit colleges and kicking banks out of the student loan business (and using the savings to boost Pell grants). But these achievements, impressive as they are, won’t do enough to help America regain the world lead in college graduation by 2020, a goal Obama himself has set. To reach that target, the president and Congress will have to do something considerably harder: take on entrenched interests in the traditional public and nonprofit higher education sector and get them to do more on behalf of students and the public. Does Washington have the will, and the ideas, to do so?

Please join the Washington Monthly magazine and Education Sector for a lively debate about the next stage of higher education reform. This event, built around the 2011 Washington Monthly College Guide, will feature a top administration policymaker and higher education leaders whose innovative institutions are posing direct challenges to the status quo.

Panelists for this event include:

Zakiya Smith, Senior Advisor for Education, White House Domestic Policy Council;

A. Craig Powell, CEO, ConnectEDU;

Robert W. Mendenhall, President, Western Governors University;

Kevin Carey, Policy Director, Education Sector;

Paul Glastris, Editor, Washington Monthly (as moderator);

with introductory remarks by Jamie Merisotis, President, Lumina Foundation for Education.

Can’t attend in person? View the Live Webcast from 9:00AM to 11:30AM (EDT) on Thursday. 9/15.

Education Sector and Washington Monthly thank the Lumina Foundation for its support of this event.

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Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer