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ERIC Number: EJ863993
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0009-1383
Playing the Numbers: Hard Choices
Doyle, William R.
Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, v41 n6 p50-54 Nov-Dec 2009 recently called this recession the worst in 50 years for state budgets. As has been the case in past economic downturns, higher education looks to be particularly hard hit. Funds from the American Recovery and Relief Act may have postponed some of the difficulty for many colleges and universities, but the outlook for public higher education in the country is grim. State student financial aid programs have been especially affected. These programs, while smaller than federal and institutional aid programs, provide crucial resources for students, both by providing access to postsecondary education and by allowing students to attend the institution of their choice. And many of the largest such programs in the country have suffered from drastic cutbacks. These programs provide money that allows students to attend college who might not otherwise do so, so they serve a crucial function in increasing access and success, a key goal of most states and of the nation under the Obama administration. In this article, the author shows that despite their responsibility to keep these programs intact as much as possible, states do not bear sole responsibility for providing aid, nor should state policymakers be the only ones to make hard choices about how to provide financial aid. As other sources of aid for low-income students come under threat, institutions too need to prioritize access as a goal for their own aid, something their current spending patterns fail to do. The simplest and most direct way to provide access is to increase financial aid for those who otherwise cannot afford to go to college, even if it means reducing financial aid for those who will attend regardless of the cost. (Contains 3 figures and 6 resources.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California; Georgia; Illinois; Minnesota; New York
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Pell Grant Program