Low-Income College Students Are Drowning in Debt

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Federal financial aid opportunities for low-income students are on the rise, but states and institutions must shift their priorities to provide financial aid to the students who need it most.

According to a new Education Sector report that cites data from the National Center for Education Statistics, states and higher education institutions are failing to target their aid dollars to students with the greatest need. In 2007-08, students from the lowest, middle, and highest income families received nearly the same dollar amount in state education grants.

What’s worse, higher education institutions awarded the most financial aid to the students who needed help the least. In 2007-08, the average grant from institutions to students from the richest families was more than $7,000. For the lowest income students: only slightly more than $5,000. 

Learn more about why this happens by reading Ed Trust’s Engines of Inequality.