To All Faculty, Staff and Students
As we all closely watch the State Budget process and try to plan for yet another massive cut to the University's direct state support, we have been keeping an equally watchful eye on significant changes in Pell Grant funding for the 2011-12 academic year. We were thoroughly disappointed to hear that the House of Representatives passed a significant reduction in the current maximum Pell Grant of $5,550 to $4705; a loss of $845 for the 2011-12 academic year.
This year more than 6,000 of Stony Brook's students registered in aid eligible programs receive Pell Grant funding. In this academic year alone, Stony Brook has disbursed over $29M in Pell Grants. If this legislation is enacted our students stand to lose over $4M in Pell Grants for the 2011-12 academic year.
This legislation will be taken up by the United States Senate early next week. It is most unfortunately linked to the continuing resolution (CR) to keep the government up and running past March 4th and to fund the government for the remaining seven months of Fiscal Year 2011.
I want to assure you that we have been actively working with our elected representatives and their respective staffs in Washington DC so they are fully aware of how devastating a cut like this will be to our students. We will continue to fight to keep Pell at the current $5,500.00 award level.
Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D.