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Study by EPOL professor finds federal stimulus fails to protect college affordability

by Sharita Forrest / Aug 8, 2014

A new analysis by higher education expert Jennifer A. Delaney, a professor in the Department of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership, indicates that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 may have failed to promote college access and affordability. According to Delaney, the federal stimulus hurt rather than helped college access and affordability by prompting reductions in student financial aid programs.

“The ARRA only applied to general appropriations, not to financial aid,” said Delaney. “So after the ARRA funds came in, states actually cut their student financial aid funds, which weren’t covered by the law. While the ARRA worked as intended, it is a little bit of a sleight of hand that states maintained what they needed for general appropriations but cut student financial aid when they had severe budget constraints.”

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