Reporting from Ann Arbor, Mich. — President Obama on Friday challenged colleges and universities to cut costs and improve quality or risk losing out to competitors in the race for federal aid.
"We are putting colleges on notice," Obama told students at the University of Michigan on Friday morning. "You can't assume that you'll just jack up tuition every single year. If you can't stop tuition from going up, the funding you get from taxpayers every year will go down."
Obama probably won't be able to pass his college affordability agenda this year, with a divided Congress opposing most of his plans.
He wants to link federal aid to campuses with performance by administrators in improving quality and value for students.
He also wants to increase the amount of federal aid available to schools and require colleges to give families clear information about their cost and value.
But aides think the ideas will find favor with the public at a time when rising tuition and living costs threaten to put college out of reach for many high school graduates.
Obama's event in Ann Arbor on Friday was the final stop on a five-city, three-day tour to promote his State of the Union agenda. The president returns to Washington in the afternoon after speaking to congressional Democrats in Maryland.