WASHINGTON, D.C., Today, the Trump Administration released its FY18 budget proposal entitled, "A New Foundation For American Greatness." IHEP Vice President of Policy Research Mamie Voight released the following statement:
“The spending plan released today represents a missed opportunity to support college access and success for our nation’s neediest students. For nearly 40 years, the Pell Grant has been a cornerstone of college access for millions of students in need—students who may not otherwise have the opportunity to pursue a college education. Rather than keeping Pell Grant funding intact, boosting the grant’s purchasing power and indexing it to inflation, the spending plan cuts the Pell program by $3.9 billion and ignores the affordability challenges that keep higher education out of reach for so many Americans.
“Access and success in higher education can dramatically transform lives, especially for those seeking to improve their life circumstances and ascend from the confines of poverty. To truly demonstrate a commitment to helping more students access and succeed in higher education, policymakers must craft budgets that reflect this ideal. The spending plan released today reflects no such commitment.
“Proposed cuts to critical education programs like Federal TRIO and GEAR UP would also block the very pathways that help young students in need prepare for entry and success in higher education. And a $488 million cut to Federal Work-Study coupled with complete elimination of the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant will slowly fracture the supports designed to bolster in-school persistence and success.
“We urge Congress to strengthen federal supports for students in need and craft a budget plan that reflects a sincere commitment to helping more students access and succeed in higher education.”