Washington state’s new financial aid program serves today’s students those who hire them

Seattle,WA city skyline

Last March, the Seattle Times ran a powerful joint opinion editorial cowritten by Microsoft’s president and chief legal officer, Brad Smith. Joining him were University of Washington President Ana Mari Cauce and then-Vice Chairman of the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges, Wayne Martin.  Their position: Let’s lift up Washington families and businesses…

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Young Invincibles: Advocating for Today’s Students

Young Invincibles gathered together advocating for today's students

As 2019 comes toward a close, we at Young Invincibles are taking stock of the many efforts we undertook this year to advocate on behalf of young adults. We have done so to advance our mission of empowering young adults aged 18-34 to fully engage in our democracy and achieve economic security.  We have maintained…

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Using a Latino Lens to Reimagine Financial Aid

man on futon reading from textbook

Financial aid has not kept pace to serve today’s students. Historically, the majority of financial aid recipients had a similar profile. Today, financial aid recipients are significantly more diverse. The profile of today’s college students continues to evolve, and at Excelencia in Education, we are focused on a significant part of this evolving student profile—Latinos.…

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Reforming Federal Work Study to Support Today’s Students

people at a meeting looking into the camera

Legislative action around the Higher Education Act is heating up. Senator Alexander has dropped a pared down version of HEA and the House just introduced their HEA reauthorization bill. As Congress considers reauthorization of the law that governs all student aid programs, they should consider reforming Federal Work Study (FWS), a program failing to live…

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Student Voice: The Pell Grant Gave Me a Second Chance

silhouette of man gazing out the window

I was sitting on the edge of my cot surrounded by thick concrete and rusted paint-chipped bars that kept me caged in like an exotic pet. My cell was the size of a parking spot. If I stretched out my limbs, each would extend to the corners of my confined living quarters. I could barely…

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From the State House to the Beltway: Truth Talk about State Financial Aid

zoomed in photo of multiple pens and various stacks of coinage

The federal role in financial aid policy tends to dominate the conversation around reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA). However, rethinking financial aid cannot occur without the participation of one of the primary providers of student financial aid: states. Despite the major role that states can play in the financial aid system, they can…

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Students Need New Models for Higher Education—and Aid Policies to Match

two people using a laptop

Three out of four college students today have at least one “non-traditional” characteristic. They didn’t enroll in college immediately after high school. They’re working adults and aren’t living with mom and dad. In fact, a quarter are parents themselves. Yet our higher education systems are built for an 18-year-old attending full-time. This is especially true…

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Student Voice: Today’s Students Rethinking Financial Aid

portrait of Mysia Perry

Editor’s Note: Mysia Perry is a LEDA Career Fellow and an Oldham Scholar in her junior year at the University of Richmond majoring in American Studies and minoring in Sociology and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies.  Insights & Outlooks (IO): Tell us about your pathway to college. Have you encountered any financial challenges along the…

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Starting From Scratch: A New Approach to Higher Ed Finance

In 2009, at the beginning of what would turn out to be a short-lived undergraduate career, I arrived at one of America’s most selective universities with an idealistic vision of what college could be. But I was dismayed to find that in class after class, theory trumped practice, and lectures superseded experiences. Frustrated, I returned…

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The Biggest Barrier to Making Financial Aid Simpler? The IRS.

zoomed in photo of a pen tip, paperclip, calculator, and graph

It seems the time is right for bold solutions on student debt – presidential candidates are proposing to forgive some or all of America’s education loans, states are attempting to regulate loan servicers, and even Secretary DeVos has called the current situation a crisis. But there are many steps on the path to big change,…

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