Lindenwood University President James D. Evans is calling for support of a renewed state-wide campaign launched by the Independent Colleges and Universities of Missouri association to save Access Missouri funding. The state’s primary need-based college tuition assistance program was slashed by more than $50 million in 2010 and is in danger of being cut further by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon as he finalizes the budget for the coming fiscal year.
Through Access Missouri, students with demonstrated financial need can receive tuition support to attend any eligible Missouri college or university. Two years ago, lawmakers passed a bill that significantly reduced Access Missouri awards in exchange for agreeing not to terminate the program altogether.
Since that time, the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority (MOHELA) has rescued Missouri students in financial need by providing $30 million to offset cuts to the program. There is no guarantee that MOHELA will continue to provide this funding, making it critical that Governor Nixon allocate the full amount of state general revenue dollars necessary to maintain the current Access Missouri award levels.
“Hundreds of Lindenwood students depend on financial assistance from Access Missouri, and without it they would not be able to attend college,” said Evans. “If the state of Missouri is looking ahead as it should, our governor and our state legislature need to support the students by ensuring the sustainability of need-based aid.”
“These young people represent the future of our state and our country, and we know that the single most significant determinant of the economic and professional success is one’s level of education.”
To email Governor Nixon requesting that the funding of the Access Missouri program be fully supported, visit http://keepmeincollege.org/emailNixon/. His office can also be reached by phone at (573) 751-3222