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Rick Santorum to speak on education

Published: Sunday, December 4, 2011

Updated: Monday, December 5, 2011 13:12

Santorum

Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/MCT

Rick Santorum

Former U.S. senator and GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum will speak about education at the University of Northern Iowa on Dec. 9 at 11 a.m. Santorum's visit is part of a series of presidential candidate education forums hosted by UNI and Iowa Public Radio.

At the event, which will be held in the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center lobby, Santorum will spend a half hour explaining his views on education, followed by a Q-and-A forum with the audience.

"Education is very important. Students are directly impacted by federal policy on education," said Patricia Geadelmann, special assistant to the president for board and governmental relations. "For instance, over a third of our students receive Pell Grants. Decisions about Pell Grants are made by the federal government and right now, with the budget cutting going on, there's a real threat to Pell Grants, so I think students have a direct interest in that, and what is decided federally could impact whether some students come to UNI at all or not."

According to Geadelmann, they are still looking for campaigns to come to UNI to participate in the education forum.

"We're hoping that we can get a couple more before Christmas," Geadelmann said.

The purpose of the Presidential Candidate Education Forum is to have the presidential candidates discuss education and to better inform UNI students and Cedar Falls community members about candidates' stances.

"We think education is a central part of our country and has a direct relationship to economic development, and how our students are prepared makes a huge difference in the economy," Geadelmann said. "So we want to elevate the importance of education and we want to find out where the candidates stand on that."

According to Geadelmann, an advantage of collaborating with IPR is that they rebroadcast the forums, reaching 200,000 listeners in Iowa.

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