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The Case for Need-Based State Grant Aid

Author: Helios Education Foundation

Currently, only 42 percent of Arizonan’s have a postsecondary degree or certificate.  However, according to the Center on Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University, in just three years, 68 percent of jobs in Arizona will require some form of postsecondary education.  If not addressed, this gap will have a significant negative impact on Arizona’s future economy.

Arizona must make a concentrated effort to increase our postsecondary degree attainment rate.  However, one challenge to achieving this goal is the lack of need-based state grant aid available to students in Arizona.

College Success Arizona recently released the third in a series of policy briefs providing further analysis on this issue.  The brief articulates the reality that tuition has increased at Arizona four-year colleges by 88 percent since 2008.  This is putting college out of reach for many low-income students.  Research shows that need-based state grant aid programs will not only increase postsecondary enrollment but also persistence and completion.  This is especially true for low-income students.

“Arizona recently set a postsecondary attainment goal of 60 percent by the year 2030,”  said Paul J. Luna, President and CEO, Helios Education Foundation.  “College Success Arizona’s report makes it clear that need-based state grant aid will create more opportunities for students to achieve a postsecondary education and help increase our state’s postsecondary attainment rates.” 
 

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