October 18, 2021

Statement From AASCU President Mildred García, Ed.D., on the Passing of Gen. Colin Powell

Kellee Edmonds
(202) 478-4662

WASHINGTON, October 18, 2021 –On behalf of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), I was deeply saddened by the passing of Gen. Colin Powell.

His life at the highest levels of leadership and public service was a testament to what is possible in America through education, dedication, and courage.

Gen. Powell accomplished many firsts in his decorated career, not only serving as the first African American National Security Advisor, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Secretary of State; the retired four-star general went on to be a tireless advocate for expanding opportunity through education.

The son of Jamaican immigrants, Gen. Powell was a proud alumnus of the AASCU family, graduating from the City University of New York, City College. He would later receive our Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1992, thanking an audience of AASCU leaders in Washington, DC, for their work giving students like him the opportunity to access an affordable, high-quality education.

Our condolences to his family and loved ones.


The American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) is a Washington, D.C.-based higher education association of nearly 400 public colleges, universities, and systems whose members share a learning- and teaching-centered culture, a historic commitment to underserved student populations, and a dedication to research and creativity that advances their regions’ economic progress and cultural development. These are institutions Delivering America’s Promise. Visit us at www.aascu.org.