Pell Grant Changes Will Slow Black Graduation Rates

By | April 16, 2013

In many ways, the route Bonita Rex took to college is not unusual. After graduating from high school in 2007, family issues forced her to delay enrolling in college. Two years later, thanks to Pell grants and an improved family situation, she enrolled in the Community College of Philadelphia with a focus on general studies in cultural science and technology.

After Rex earns an Associate degree while holding down two part-time jobs, she plans to complete requirements for a bachelor’s degree at California State University.

But recent changes made to Pell grants has Rex, 24, worried that she might not be able to complete her bachelor’s degree at Cal State or anywhere else.

The Pell Grant program nearly doubled from assisting about 5 million students in 2009 to 9.4 million students in 2012. The program, which provides low-income students with financial aid they do not have to repay, was projected to face an $18.3 billion shortfall during 2012-2013 academic year because of an increase in need. (Sacramento Observer)

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