As if 20 percent tuition increases and declining state support arenâ€™t enough, a bill has been introduced by the House of Representatives which, if passed, will dramatically reduce the accessibility of the Pell Grant, a form of aid that more than 5,000 CSU students depend on to afford tuition.
Republican supporters of this bill say itâ€™s a necessary, cost-saving measure to reduce the deficit, but we donâ€™t buy it. Instead, it just proves our government has terribly shortsighted and misplaced priorities.
A note to Congress: if you think cutting access to education is really going to solve our countryâ€™s economic woes, then you need a serious reality check. And you seriously need to get your priorities straight.
The Pell Grant enables diverse students who wouldnâ€™t otherwise have the ability to attend college otherwise receive a quality education. In turn, this education enables these students to get good jobs, innovate, pay taxes and generate money for the economy.
Even in the midst of a deficit, accessibility to higher education is a good investment, particularly in an economy thatâ€™s in desperate need of job -creating innovation.
But for Congress, itâ€™s not that simple â€“â€“ which is sad because in a quest to decrease the deficit, this blow to education is, ironically enough, making matters worse.
Itâ€™s true that we need to find a way to reduce the deficit, but cutting programs like Pell Grants â€“â€“ which actually have a discernable benefit and make a genuine investment in our future â€“â€“ isnâ€™t the way to go about it.