Who should get financial aid?
How should financial aid be given out? How can we make college more affordable? How can student loans be improved?
The NY Times recently explored these questions and more in a Room for Debate column.
Simplifying financial aid
The higher education professionals involved in the discussion emphasized the need for creative solutions to pay for college and argued that a family’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC) should be made using income alone.
According to Mark Kantrowitz, senior vice president and publisher of Edvisors.com, this would help demystify the financial aid process and make it easier for families to figure out how to pay for college.
Student aid forms and formulas are so complicated that they practically serve as obstacles to success, and for some of the truly daunted, even barriers to access.
While we don’t agree with some of the assertions (for example, income is highly relative to where the family lives–$60,000 in one job market is different than another), the authors make some good points about the need for student loan reform and the flaws of financial aid calculators, which we’ve discussed on our blog.
Improving financial aid and college access
Do you agree that an income-only approach would reduce the mystery of financial aid calculations? How can colleges help students and families of limited means afford college?
Join the discussion below or by tweeting at us @CFGCollege.