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Weekly Wrap Up: "Make College More Affordable"

A quick look at what was going on at the White House from August 19-23, 2013.

Watch the video.

A Better Bargain for Students: President Obama hit the road on Thursday for a two-day bus tour in New York and Pennsylvania to share his plan to make college more affordable. The President stressed the importance of ensuring that higher education pays off for students and their families:

“Too many students are facing a choice that they should never have to make:  Either they say no to college and pay the price for not getting a degree -- and that's a price that lasts a lifetime -- or you do what it takes to go to college, but then you run the risk that you won’t be able to pay it off because you've got so much debt.”

President Obama also shared his own story about college loans in an email to White House subscribers. If you didn’t receive it, be sure to sign up for future updates.

Meet Sunny: The Obamas welcomed home a new member of their family, a Portuguese water dog named Sunny! The new puppy is settling into the White House and is expected to take on many family projects, just like her big brother Bo has.

Administration Officials Answer Your Education Questions: On Thursday, the White House hosted office hours with Deputy Communications Director Katie Beirne-Fallon and Deputy Director of Domestic Policy Council James Kvaal. You can check out many of questions asked on Storify.

On Friday, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan joined Sal Khan, the founder of Khan Academy, to discuss how we can innovate in American education.

“At a time when going to college has never been more important, unfortunately it has never been more expensive,” Duncan said. “And so we have to work together to drive down costs. We have to have much greater transparency and help young people and their families make better choices.”

Mental Health and the Affordable Care Act: On Wednesday, health leaders and mental health advocates came to the White House to talk about how health reform will help Americans gain access to mental health coverage if they need.  Because of the Affordable Care Act, 71 million privately insured Americans have gained improved coverage for preventive services.

We the (Immigrant) Geeks: Friday’s edition of We the Geeks highlighted prominent immigrants who are breaking ground in their professional fields. In a Google+ Hangout moderated by Todd Park, U.S. Chief Technology Officer, and Doug Rand, Assistant Director of Entrepreneurship at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, participants discussed why immigration reform is necessary to keep bringing innovators to the United States.

Hosting the 1973 Super Bowl Champion Miami Dolphins: On Tuesday, the undefeated 1972-1973 Miami Dolphins visited the White House. President Obama congratulated the team for their legacy both on the field and in their communities.

“I know that some people may be asking why we’re doing this after all these years.  And my answer is simple:  I wanted to be the young guy up here for once,” President Obama joked about the team’s visit 40 years after they earned their Super Bowl rings.

One Year of Open Source Code for We The People: One year ago on Friday, the White House published its source code for We the People. In honor of this anniversary, we updated readers about our new web development projects and how you can get involved.

Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Strategy: On Monday, the Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Task Force released its final report. The Hurricane Sandy Rebuilding Strategy provides recommendations to rebuild and reinvigorate Sandy-impacted areas. Over the past six months, FEMA has provided $12 billion to individuals and communities in need.