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The University of Virginia's Miller Center and the National Commission on Financing 21st Century Higher Education this week released four new white papers that describe higher education's fiscal challenges and provide initial solutions.

“The commission is working toward consensus on new policies that have the potential to help the nation meet educational attainment goals,” Juliet Garcia, a member of the commission and a senior adviser to the chancellor of the University of Texas, said in a written statement. “We are exploring how to increase graduation rates with existing resources, and looking for additional public and private financing options to make college affordable and attainable for all students.”

The series eventually will include 10 papers. The first four focus on the outlook for states' spending, transformations affecting higher education, lessons from other countries and best practices in state higher education finance.