As the costs of attending colleges nationwide continue their upward climb, so do the number of students who are reliant on federal loans and grants to help pay their journey toward a higher education.
Unfortunately, recent changes to the distribution of federal pell grants are causing a dilemma for a some of WMU “super seniors,” who are forced to look for other sources to help pay for their undergraduate degree, as reported by Ursula Zerilli with the Kalamazoo Gazette.
As of July, full-time students who are eligible for federal aid can receive pell grant funds for no more than 12 semesters, or the full-time equivalent for students who are attending less than full-time. This, combined with the reduced amount of money given to students as they progress further into their academic career, leaves some students seeking full-time employment or other means of income to continue attending college.
Zerilli spoke to a number of WMU students affected by these policy changes. One such person, Adam Dean, worked for 65 hours over the summer in order to pay tuition and other costs for the fall semester. Below is a quote from the Gazette’s story:
“I did not know that I was going to be losing my Pell Grant, so it was a bit of a shock,” said Dean, 26, who has changed his major three times and attended four colleges and universities while working to make ends meet. “It stressed me out for a while, but I just ended up having to work harder and save more money.”
The rest of the article can be found here, at MLive.com.