Troubling Gaps in HOPE Point to Need-based Aid Solutions

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Georgia Budget and Policy Institute


Completing a postsecondary program is more important than ever for a student’s future well-being and the state’s economic growth. But rising costs are combining with shrinking access to Georgia’s financial aid programs to push higher education out of reach for too many students, especially those from low-income families. Tuition skyrocketed in recent years, driven in part by deep cuts in state funding. Meanwhile, stagnant wages are making it hard for most students and their families to keep up. About 13,000 students were dropped by the university system from fall 2014 to fall 2015 alone because they could not pay tuition and fees. The author argues that despite the HOPE Scholarship and the HOPE Grant, there are still many students who cannot access or complete the higher education.



Georgia, student financial aid administration, higher education system, completion rates, educational attainment