Delivering Early Information about College Financial Aid

Posted by Urban Institute on July 27, 2015

Systemic Strategies for Early Awareness of Financial Aid

One challenge that college access programs continue to face: What to do when high school students self-select out of the college track because they don’t think higher education is a financial option? For years, many in the college access and success community have said, if only we could let students in middle school know they’d likely be eligible for financial aid, they would make different choices. Advocates frequently mentioned the solution: early awareness through federal means-tested benefit programs, but not until now have researchers explored the question of “how.”

In hopes of answering this question, the National College Access Network partnered with the Urban Institute to commission research from senior fellow Sandy Baum, and researchers Sarah Minton and Lorraine Blatt. The results are released in a new report, Delivering Early Information about College Financial Aid: Exploring the Options for Middle School Students.

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