Help Support Student Aid in the 2008-09 Budget
Dear students and colleagues:
Pennsylvania’s low- and moderate-income students face cuts to their need-based grants. Due to changes in federal law and turmoil in the financial markets, the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) will cut $40 million from its contribution to the Student Grant Program. In addition, PHEAA representatives told the House Appropriations Committee that the remaining $35 million it currently plans to spend next year could be in jeopardy.
Even though the governor has proposed increasing aid by $11.6 million, the maximum student aid grant of $4,700 may be cut by anywhere between $200 and $700. Further losses in purchasing power, recipients or grant funds may occur if PHEAA further reduces funding from business earnings and the state does not meet its obligation to students and institutions by providing additional state dollars.
The Wilkes University community prides itself on serving first-generation NEPA students, many of whom need financial assistance. In fact, 80 percent of our students receive financial aid.
Please let your elected state representatives know how important increasing grant aid is to you, your family and fellow students. Take a minute to communicate with your governor
, state senators and house members
a simple message:
- PHEAA’s contribution to student aid is being reduced by $40 million in 2008-09. For this reason, students may lose as much as $700 in their grants.
- Low- and moderate-income students will be hurt the most.
- Please increase PHEAA student grant funding by 10%, or $38.6 million.
Links are provided below or to your left that contain a sample letter and bullet points for writing or talking on the telephone with your elected representatives.
Information on contacting state legislators is available at http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/home/find.cfm
. Look under Senate/House to find e-mail addresses. Click on “Members” to find list of all members, and then click on the name of an individual member to find all contact information. Personal letters or phone calls are the best form of contact. However, an e-mail contact is better than no contact at all.
Thank you for your attention to this matter.