Financial Aid Archives - The Campaign for College Opportunity

A Cinderella Story for the Modern Girl

jessie and mom graduation

By: Jessie Ryan, Executive Vice President, Campaign for College Opportunity

In honor of Mother’s Day, Executive Vice President, Jessie Ryan, shares the instrumental role her mother played in the work that she does today.

Last August, after courageously waging a two-year battle with cancer, my Mother passed away.  She was my person.  My source of unconditional love, laughter, and encouragement.  A larger than life personality, that despite a life characterized by hardship was responsible for shaping me into the purpose-driven woman I am today. Read More

Why the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG) Matters

tuffy & Linda
By: Linda Vasquez, Regional Affairs Director

The promise of higher education accessibility is deeply tied to the availability of financial aid programs for those with the highest need. That’s why federal aid that supports American students across the nation is so important. Unfortunately, in President Trump’s proposed budget, a critical program, the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants (FSEOG), is at risk of being eliminated.

There is endless amount of research that I could cite for you that demonstrate how a grant such as the FSEOG can serve as a critical tool to increasing college access, especially among underrepresented and underserved students, but the most powerful proof will come straight from a student who benefited from it. Read More

Are New Financial Aid Policies Keeping College Affordable at Major Public Universities?

John Douglass
By John Aubrey Douglass, Ph.D. – Senior Research Fellow – Public Policy and Higher Education
Student Experience in the Research University (SERU) Consortium
Center for Studies in Higher Education – UC Berkeley

In an era of significant disinvestment in public higher education by state governments, many public universities are moving toward a “progressive tuition model” that attempts to invest approximately one-third of tuition income into institutional financial aid for lower-income and middle-class students. The objective is to mitigate the cost of tuition and keep college affordable. But is this model as currently formulated working? What levels of financial stress are students of all income groups experiencing? And are they changing their behaviors? Read More

College Affordability a Concern as Students Head Back to School!

 By Campaign for College Opportunity President Michele Siqueiros

As back-to-school season and the college application period approaches this fall, paying for college remains a concern facing many students and their families.

Even as the value of a college degree grows and more students are prepared and want to go to college, the cost of college is one of the biggest barriers low-income students face. At the Campaign we believe that family income should never keep a talented and hard-working American from the many opportunities possible before them. This is a quintessential American value that we must preserve and it is also why student aid is funded, including the federal Pell Grant, worth up to $5,700 per year for low-income student and Cal Grants, worth between $4,000 and $12,000 per year, depending on the type of institution the student attends. However, the broken process of applying for Pell and Cal Grants inadvertently sets up a new obstacle: a complex, redundant and poorly-timed federal financial aid form that can sometimes be an unnecessary hurdle for California students in need of aid in order to go to college.

Read More

U.S. News College Rankings and Pell Grants

Written by: Harley Frankel, Founder and Executive Director of College Match and Michele Siqueiros, President of the Campaign for College Opportunity.

Equal educational opportunity and diversity have been core values of American democracy since the 18th Century. For these reasons, we have invested heavily in public education, land grant colleges and numerous public universities. But unfortunately, our higher education system has not done a very good job in the area of diversity.

Students from low-income families (defined as the bottom quarter of Americans ranked by income) are the most underrepresented group of Americans at the nation’s top colleges and universities, according to a 2004 Century Foundation report. Only 3% of students at the 146 most selective colleges come from families in this quartile. In stark contrast, 75% of all students at these institutions are from families in the top income quartile. This means that students in the upper income quartile are 25 times more likely to attend a top-ranked college than a student born to low-income parents.  Read More

Playing the Cal Grant Odds

June 12, 2014 | Written by: Matthew La Rocque, Research Analyst, The Institute for College Access & Success

California college students who meet Cal Grant eligibility requirements are guaranteed a Cal Grant if they’re recent high school graduates who meet the application deadline. But students who apply for a grant more than one year after finishing high school or who miss the application deadline face a starkly different reality. Just 22,500 Cal Grants for these students – called “competitive” Cal Grants – are authorized each year. And for 2013-14, there were 16 eligible applicants for every authorized award.
Read More