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Central Washington University

CWU Will Offset Cuts to Federal Financial Aid

 

ELLENSBURG, Wash. (March 1, 2013) – Central Washington University has announced that it will backfill any cuts occurring to university students. CWU anticipates cuts to Work Study and the Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (SEOG) will amount to about $14,300.
 
Cuts to federal spending associated with "sequestration" began today, March 1. 
 
CWU President James L. Gaudino says that the university will offset any reductions in those programs for university students this academic year, which will end in June, and also for the 2013-14 academic year. 
 
“We want our students to know now that CWU will make sure the federal funding they’re counting on will be there for them,” Gaudino said. “As a university where nearly three-fourths of our students rely on some sort of aid, this is the appropriate and responsible course of action for us to take.” 
 
No reductions are anticipated for funding to the federal Pell Grant Program, which provides need-based grants to low-income undergraduates. However increased pressure on the federal budget may place at risk the ability to keep up with increases in tuition, which has replaced state support as the primary funding source for public higher education. 
 
Other programs slated for federal cuts include TRIO programs, which help prepare and provide services to low-income and minority students before and during college. These discretionary programs within the US Department of Education include the High School Equivalency Program (HEP), College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP), Educational Opportunity Center (EOC), Student Support Services (SSS), Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP), and the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program. 
 
It is anticipated that funding for these programs could be reduced by 5.1 percent (originally estimated at 8.2 percent) for the 2014 fiscal year. This cut would result in a reduction of $163,416 in federal funds at CWU.  
 
If this reduction were carried through each grant cycle, CWU would experience a loss of an estimated $643,503 over the course of the next five years. If reductions come to fruition, grant programs will either have to reduce the number of students they serve or reduce the services they offer.
 
Media contact: Linda Schactler, executive director, CWU Public Affairs, 509-607-4103, schactler@cwu.edu