Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Washington UPDATE: HBCU Leaders Urge Expansion of Title III and TRIO Programs

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Washington UPDATE: HBCU Leaders Urge Expansion of Title III and TRIO Programs

Article excerpt

Washington UPDATE: HBCU Leaders Urge Expansion of Title III and TRIO. Programs

Expansion of Title III aid to minority institutions and TRIO programs for disadvantaged youth emerged as top priorities at a December 17 public hearing on Higher Education Act (HEA) reauthorization in Washington, D.C.

Leaders of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) sought continued support for Title III plus programmatic changes to increase the program's flexibility. For example, Congress could help HBCUs immensely by allowing them to spend up to 20 percent of Title III funding to build their endowments, said Dr. Earl Richardson, president of Morgan State University.

Richardson, representing the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Education (NAFEO), also urged the Education Department (ED) to "reconsider" the current policy that requires Black graduate schools to match any Title III grant of more than $500,000.

The federal government currently provides $108.9 million in aid to HBCUs plus $19.6 million for HBCU graduate institutions.

TRIO drew support from a variety of higher-education groups which praised the program's efforts to recruit low-income, first-generation students to college.

Despite its successful track record, TRIO currently serves only 5 percent of eligible students, said James Perley, president of the American Association of University Professors. He also called on the federal government to use TRIO as an incentive to more federal grant aid. The government could provide a slightly larger Pell Grant to those who successfully complete a TRIO program, thereby cutting their future loan burden.

During the presidential campaign, President Clinton called for allowing families to deduct college tuition costs of up to $10,000 a year from their income taxes. He also called for $1,500 in aid to help students pay for the first two years of college if they maintain a B average. …

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