IHEP Statement on the Biden Administration’s FY23 Budget RequestPublished Mar 29, 2022
Washington, D.C. (March 29, 2022) – Yesterday, the Biden Administration released its fiscal year 2023 (FY23) budget request. In response to the proposal’s higher education components, including a focus on students historically excluded from postsecondary education and on the institutions that serve those students, IHEP President and CEO, Mamie Voight, issued the following statement:
“Investments signal priorities, and this budget demonstrates the Administration’s commitment to promoting equitable opportunities for all students—regardless of race, background, or circumstance. Recognizing that higher education can be a pathway to a better living and a better life, we celebrate the ways in which this budget proposal seeks to pave that pathway more equitably through a notable increase to the maximum Pell Grant award, investment in college completion efforts, and enhanced commitment to institutions serving Black, Latinx, Indigenous, and Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) students, and students from low-income backgrounds.
“The Administration’s proposed $1,775 increase to the maximum Pell Grant, paired with a recent $400 increase to the award amount in the FY22 omnibus appropriations bill, is a promising and much-needed step toward doubling the maximum award by the end of this decade to restore the Grant’s purchasing power and, nearly half a century after its creation, allow the Grant to reach its full potential. We encourage rapid implementation of a comprehensive plan to bring that doubling to fruition, and also call on Congress and the Administration to strengthen the Pell Grant program in the long term, including indexing the award to inflation and protecting the Pell Grant reserve fund. Nearly seven million low- and moderate-income Americans rely on this foundational element of our student aid system to access and succeed in college, and this proposed investment is necessary to keep pace with the financial needs of today’s students.
“Higher education can provide economic and non-economic benefits to students, their families and communities, our workforce, and society as a whole – but only if students complete their degree or credential. IHEP welcomes the $110 million investment in retention and completion grants under the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE). This investment holds the potential to scale promising practices in ways that support completion, catalyze economic mobility for the students who can most benefit from higher education’s transformative power, and, in turn, deliver the society-wide benefits postsecondary education can provide.
“Similarly, IHEP celebrates the Administration’s proposed investment in institutions serving Black, Latinx, Indigenous, and AAPI students. Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) play a critical role in our communities and society by providing access to postsecondary opportunities for students who have been historically excluded from our higher education system. Unfortunately, these institutions have been critically and chronically underfunded and have been ‘doing more with less’ for decades. This proposed funding will help these institutions increase their capacity, bolster student supports, and make higher education more affordable.
“We encourage members of Congress to recognize this opportunity to invest in an equitable and just future, build on this proposal, and enact increased support for today’s students, catalyze social and economic mobility, and yield the positive long-term generational change that individuals, families, communities, and our country as a whole so deeply needs.”