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NAICU Statement on the 50th Anniversary of the Pell Grant Program

NAICU Statement on the 50th Anniversary of the Pell Grant Program

June 22, 2022

On June 23, 1972, the Education Amendments Act of 1972 was signed by President Richard M. Nixon. These amendments created the Basic Educational Opportunity Grant, later named the Pell Grant in honor of its sponsor, Senator Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island.
 
NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M. issued the following statement on the eve of this golden anniversary:
 
“Today we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Pell Grant, a critical federal student aid program that has provided a pathway to higher education for 80 million students nationwide.  In advocating for his legislation 50 years ago, Sen. Claiborne Pell (D-RI) said: ‘This is very important legislation, for it’s through this Act that the dream of access, and opportunity for college education becomes a reality.’
 
“Currently, the Pell Grant helps nearly 7 million students access a higher education and is a proven program that enjoys strong bipartisan support among Americans and policy makers alike. The pandemic, however, has pulled the rug out from under low-income students. Since the pandemic began, college enrollment is down 13% across higher education, and financial aid applications are down 6% for low-income students. We are on the cusp of losing a generation of students.
 
“The Pell Grant program remains the fairest and most efficient way to help low-income and first-generation students access and complete college and enter the workforce. However, additional grant aid is needed. That is why we support doubling the Pell Grant maximum award to $13,000, which President Joe Biden also supports.  If the Pell Grant is doubled, not only will current students receive increased grants, but the pool of eligible students will grow, providing more working-class students access to aid.
 
“Doubling Pell will put more money in the hands of students first and allow them to use it at the college or training program that best fits their educational needs. However, the president’s proposal would not double the current Pell Grant amount until 2029.
 
“So, on this day marking 50 years of the Pell Grant, we celebrate the impact it has had on so many students and families but also highlight the continued work that must be undertaken to ensure that the maximum award is increased as quickly as possible, putting these expanded resources in the hands of students sooner rather than later.”
 
Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.
President
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities
On June 23, 1972, the Education Amendments Act of 1972 was signed by President Richard M. Nixon. These amendments created the Basic Educational Opportunity Grant, later named the Pell Grant in honor of its sponsor, Senator Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island.
 
NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M. issued the following statement on the eve of this golden anniversary:
 
“Today we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Pell Grant, a critical federal student aid program that has provided a pathway to higher education for 80 million students nationwide.  In advocating for his legislation 50 years ago, Sen. Claiborne Pell (D-RI) said: ‘This is very important legislation, for it’s through this Act that the dream of access, and opportunity for college education becomes a reality.’
 
“Currently, the Pell Grant helps nearly 7 million students access a higher education and is a proven program that enjoys strong bipartisan support among Americans and policy makers alike. The pandemic, however, has pulled the rug out from under low-income students. Since the pandemic began, college enrollment is down 13% across higher education, and financial aid applications are down 6% for low-income students. We are on the cusp of losing a generation of students.
 
“The Pell Grant program remains the fairest and most efficient way to help low-income and first-generation students access and complete college and enter the workforce. However, additional grant aid is needed. That is why we support doubling the Pell Grant maximum award to $13,000, which President Joe Biden also supports.  If the Pell Grant is doubled, not only will current students receive increased grants, but the pool of eligible students will grow, providing more working-class students access to aid.
 
“Doubling Pell will put more money in the hands of students first and allow them to use it at the college or training program that best fits their educational needs. However, the president’s proposal would not double the current Pell Grant amount until 2029.
 
“So, on this day marking 50 years of the Pell Grant, we celebrate the impact it has had on so many students and families but also highlight the continued work that must be undertaken to ensure that the maximum award is increased as quickly as possible, putting these expanded resources in the hands of students sooner rather than later.”
 
Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.
President
National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities

June 22, 2022

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NAICU President Issues Statement on President Biden’s FY 2023 Budget

NAICU President Issues Statement on President Biden’s FY 2023 Budget

March 28, 2022

Today, President Biden released his budget for the 2023 fiscal year, which included increasing the Pell Grant maximum, along with a commitment to doubling the maximum.  The president’s budget includes a $1,775 increase in the maximum award, which would bring the total from $6,895 to $8,670.
 
The budget also includes significant increases for critically important federal student aid programs, and recognized the importance and contributions of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribally-Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs), and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).
 
NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M. issued the following statement:
 
“Doubling the maximum Pell Grant award is a top policy priority for NAICU.  Today, President Biden made yet another commitment to make that priority a reality.  The president’s budget calls for a nearly $2,000 increase in the Pell Grant maximum award and a commitment to double the award by 2029."
 
“This is an important and historic commitment to the Pell Grant and the students and families who rely on these resources to access a higher education. NAICU applauds the Administration for taking this next step and renewing its commitment to doubling the Pell Grant. While we would like to see this happen more quickly, the president’s proposals are steps in the right direction and we hope that Congress will move quickly to consider the budget."
 
"In addition to Pell, NAICU continues to support increased funding for Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants and Federal Work-Study, which must remain major parts of a low-income student’s aid package to ensure access, choice, and flexibility for the best fit institution."
 
“National polling shows that nearly 90% of Americans support the Pell Grant and 75% support doubling the maximum award. The polling also shows that the Pell Grant, which historically has enjoyed bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, continues to be a program that both Democrats and Republicans back (66% of Republicans and 88% of Democrats support doubling Pell)."
 
“In addition to the Pell Grant increase, the president’s budget also shows the Administration’s support for the federal institutional aid programs, providing significant increases to help more students and families and has rightfully recognized the value of HBCU’s, MSIs, and TCCUs by providing resources to enhance institutional capacity at those colleges and universities."
 
“It is our hope that Congress will take this up soon and ensure these critical resources are allocated to these and other higher education programs.”
 
Today, President Biden released his budget for the 2023 fiscal year, which included increasing the Pell Grant maximum, along with a commitment to doubling the maximum.  The president’s budget includes a $1,775 increase in the maximum award, which would bring the total from $6,895 to $8,670.
 
The budget also includes significant increases for critically important federal student aid programs, and recognized the importance and contributions of the nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribally-Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs), and Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs).
 
NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M. issued the following statement:
 
“Doubling the maximum Pell Grant award is a top policy priority for NAICU.  Today, President Biden made yet another commitment to make that priority a reality.  The president’s budget calls for a nearly $2,000 increase in the Pell Grant maximum award and a commitment to double the award by 2029."
 
“This is an important and historic commitment to the Pell Grant and the students and families who rely on these resources to access a higher education. NAICU applauds the Administration for taking this next step and renewing its commitment to doubling the Pell Grant. While we would like to see this happen more quickly, the president’s proposals are steps in the right direction and we hope that Congress will move quickly to consider the budget."
 
"In addition to Pell, NAICU continues to support increased funding for Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants and Federal Work-Study, which must remain major parts of a low-income student’s aid package to ensure access, choice, and flexibility for the best fit institution."
 
“National polling shows that nearly 90% of Americans support the Pell Grant and 75% support doubling the maximum award. The polling also shows that the Pell Grant, which historically has enjoyed bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, continues to be a program that both Democrats and Republicans back (66% of Republicans and 88% of Democrats support doubling Pell)."
 
“In addition to the Pell Grant increase, the president’s budget also shows the Administration’s support for the federal institutional aid programs, providing significant increases to help more students and families and has rightfully recognized the value of HBCU’s, MSIs, and TCCUs by providing resources to enhance institutional capacity at those colleges and universities."
 
“It is our hope that Congress will take this up soon and ensure these critical resources are allocated to these and other higher education programs.”
 

March 28, 2022

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NAICU President Issues Statement on President Biden’s State of the Union Address

NAICU President Issues Statement on President Biden’s State of the ...

March 01, 2022

During tonight’s State of the Union Address, President Biden highlighted two important proposals that will significantly help students and families around the country.  He urged Congress to increase both the Pell Grant and the nation’s commitment to Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
 
NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M. issued the following statement:
 
“Last night during his State of the Union address, President Biden reaffirmed his commitment to millions of students and families by urging Congress to increase both the Pell Grant and the nation’s historic support for Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
 
“Throughout its nearly 50 year history, the Pell Grant has helped more than 80 million students access a higher education.  Today, the grant helps over 6 million students annually across all sectors of higher education. According to a recent survey, over 80% of Americans support expanding the Pell Grant, including 77% of Republicans and 91% of Democrats.
 
“The Pell Grant is a proven student aid program that enjoys strong bipartisan support, and is the fairest and most efficient way to help low-income and first-generation students access and complete college.  Expanding the Pell Grant will put more money in the hands of students, providing critical financial assistance, and allow them to use it at the college or training program that best fits their educational needs.
 
“We applaud President Biden for his continued support of both the Pell Grant and the nation’s HBCUs, and for putting higher education front and center in his domestic policy agenda.  These are critical investments in our students and our nation’s future that will have a profound impact on our economic recovery from the pandemic.”
 
 
During tonight’s State of the Union Address, President Biden highlighted two important proposals that will significantly help students and families around the country.  He urged Congress to increase both the Pell Grant and the nation’s commitment to Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
 
NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M. issued the following statement:
 
“Last night during his State of the Union address, President Biden reaffirmed his commitment to millions of students and families by urging Congress to increase both the Pell Grant and the nation’s historic support for Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
 
“Throughout its nearly 50 year history, the Pell Grant has helped more than 80 million students access a higher education.  Today, the grant helps over 6 million students annually across all sectors of higher education. According to a recent survey, over 80% of Americans support expanding the Pell Grant, including 77% of Republicans and 91% of Democrats.
 
“The Pell Grant is a proven student aid program that enjoys strong bipartisan support, and is the fairest and most efficient way to help low-income and first-generation students access and complete college.  Expanding the Pell Grant will put more money in the hands of students, providing critical financial assistance, and allow them to use it at the college or training program that best fits their educational needs.
 
“We applaud President Biden for his continued support of both the Pell Grant and the nation’s HBCUs, and for putting higher education front and center in his domestic policy agenda.  These are critical investments in our students and our nation’s future that will have a profound impact on our economic recovery from the pandemic.”
 
 

March 01, 2022

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Lois Dickson Rice Posthumously Honored for Role in Developing the Federal Pell Grant Program

Lois Dickson Rice Posthumously Honored for Role in Developing the ...

February 25, 2022

Lois Dickson Rice, a former executive with the College Board, who teamed with Senator Claiborne Pell (D-RI) to revolutionize federal student aid programs, was posthumously awarded NAICU’s 2022 Advocacy Award for Independent Higher Education during a special dinner honoring the 50 year legacy of the Pell Grant program during the Association’s 2022 Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day.
 
After having helped create the Pell Grant, Rice set her mind and energy toward lobbying Congress to pass the legislation that would create the program.  The passage of the Pell Grant into law was neither easy nor expected.  It was through Rice’s tenacity, and that of the bill’s advocates and sponsors, that the program was approved and funded.  Her work rightly earned her the moniker, “Mother of the Pell Grant,” to complement Senator Pell’s recognition as the program’s founding father.
 
“As we celebrate the 50 year legacy of the Pell Grant program and the impact it has had on more than 80 million students, it is important to remember the pioneers who made this program possible for students,” said NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.  “Lois Dickson Rice’s advocacy for the notion that federal funds should follow the student is a proven idea today that empowers millions of low-income and first generation students every year.”
 
The NAICU Advocacy Award was established to recognize individuals who have championed the cause of independent higher education. The recipient of this award has provided leadership, established resources, or enacted policy at the state or national level that recognized the role of independent colleges and universities in serving public purposes. No single contribution makes one eligible to receive the award, it recognizes a lifetime of service, initiative, and determination.
 
Rice’s daughter, Ambassador Susan Rice, accepted the award on behalf of the family.
 
“My brother John and I are deeply gratified to accept this award on behalf of our late mother, Lois Dickson Rice,” Ambassador Rice said. “I’m fortunate to have played many roles over the course of my life and career, but one of the titles of which I will always be proudest is to be the daughter of “the Mother of the Pell Grant.”
 
Ambassador Rice continued: “Passing Pell took tenacity. It took patience. It took passionate advocates—from students to community college presidents, from an aristocratic Rhode Island Senator to a dogged Black female College Board executive—to achieve. When you consider how many Pell recipients have gone on to shape so many other lives—as doctors, lawyers, and artists, as engineers and public servants—as college presidents—the true impact of Pell is incalculable.”  (Complete prepared remarks)
 
In addition to Ambassador Rice, two recipients of Pell Grants, Suzanne M. Rivera, Ph.D., president of Macalester College (MN), and Michelle Vasquez, a student at Trinity Washington University (DC), also spoke at the dinner.
 
Rivera described arriving at Brown University (RI) with a suitcase given to her as a high school graduation gift, a trunk and a black garbage bag containing bedding from home.
 
“I wasn’t sure what to expect of college life,” she said.  “I imagined it would be academically rigorous and I thought there would be parties. But I didn’t know how unfamiliar it would feel to me because I didn’t understand the cultural landscape of the academy– something we now sometimes call “the hidden curriculum of higher education.”
 
She continued: “Despite the challenges of adjusting to life at an elite college, I knew it was a privilege to be there.  I went to lectures given by world leaders, artists, and thinkers whose names I recognized only from newspapers and books.  I joined student organizations and clubs.  I got a summer research internship.  I began to think of myself as a scholar.  None of this would have been possible without my Pell Grant, and for that I am deeply grateful.”
 
Rivera’s college experience was transformative for her and her family.
 
“I know that the liberal arts education I received in college fundamentally changed me,” she said. “It opened my mind and my heart to new experiences.  It introduced me to people I never would have met (including my spouse, with whom I co-founded a club for students on financial aid).  It encouraged me to take intellectual risks.  Above all, it gave me the tools to forge a career focused on advancing opportunities for other talented and deserving students, who– by happenstance of birth– are unable to afford college tuition.
 
Moreover, the Pell Grant program had a profound impact on her family as two of her younger siblings attended private colleges with the support of Pell Grants – a sister went to Sarah Lawrence College (NY) and a brother went to Roger Williams University (RI).  Eventually, her single mother enrolled in college – at age 42– with a Pell Grant and completed her degree at Brandeis University (MA) while working two jobs and parenting a younger brother who is intellectually disabled.  (Complete prepared remarks)
 
A native of Washington, DC, Vasquez talked about her college pathway from a high school sophomore unware of college to graduating college senior.
 
“I raised the idea of college with my family, and I am thankful to have received their full support and continuous prayers for me until this day,” she said.  “However, unresolved was how I would pay for college.  Senior year, I began to apply to colleges, and I also applied to some scholarships. Actually, a lot of scholarships. In fact, a little over 130 scholarships – I was very motivated!”
 
Vasquez said she was inspired by the idea that she would be the first in “my entire Latino family to go to college” and “I would be the main role model for my younger brother who would be next in this journey.”
 
“My Pell Grants have been instrumental to my attendance at Trinity since 2019,” Vasquez said.  “And now I am honored to share that because of the Pell Grant support and my financial aid package at Trinity, I will be graduating as Student Government Council President, as an honors student, and with a secured position to work as a consultant at Accenture upon graduation.”
 
She continued:  “Had it not been for my Federal Pell Grants, my chances of going to college would have deteriorated significantly. Because of my Pell grants, I have unlimited options for choosing a fulfilling career path and paving a more dignified and safer future for my immigrant, hard-working family that would have been unimaginable to that sophomore high school Michelle.”  (Complete prepared remarks)
 
Lois Dickson Rice Background
 
Fifty years ago, while working at what is now the College Board, Rice helped create the Pell Grant, working directly with the program’s namesake, Senator Claiborne Pell (D-RI).  Rice and Sen. Pell were of the mind that a simpler and more empowering method for low-income students would be to provide direct aid to them based on income and not merit.  The students would then be able to use the aid at the institution that best fit their individual needs.  As Rice recalled in an interview many years later, “we were not anti-institution, we were just pro-student.”
 
Rice broke away from the higher education pack.  At the time, the prevailing wisdom was that federal student aid funding should go to institutions to determine which students should get aid.  Rather than adhering to the status quo, Rice advocated for the novel concept that federal support in higher education should be put in the hands of students, who in turn would use it at the college of their choice. 
 
Fifty years later, the Pell Grant program has made college possible for millions of Americans and enjoys broad bipartisan support.  Recent polling suggests that 60% of Americans are familiar with the program, and 87% support the Pell Grant.  Forty-two percent have either received a Pell Grant themselves or have a member of their immediate family who received a Pell Grant.  This is an extraordinary degree of recognition for any federal program.
 
Rice was born to immigrants from Jamaica who had big dreams for their children’s education, despite their own work as a janitor and maid.  Her future success was foreshadowed early on as student council president, valedictorian and the student voted “Most Likely to Succeed” at Portland (Maine) High School.  She went on to attend Radcliffe College, where she was elected student body president and graduated in 1954. 
 
Rice’s distinguished professional career included rising through the ranks to become an executive at the College Entrance Examination Board (now the College Board). After a lengthy career there she became a higher education scholar at the Brookings Institution, where she published numerous works on federal higher education policies, directed the Think Tank Consortium, and led an effort to promote racial diversity at public policy organizations.  Having served on numerus well-known boards, both corporate and non-profit, Rice was a pioneer for many women and minorities seeking similar leadership positions in America. 
 
Lois Dickson Rice, a former executive with the College Board, who teamed with Senator Claiborne Pell (D-RI) to revolutionize federal student aid programs, was posthumously awarded NAICU’s 2022 Advocacy Award for Independent Higher Education during a special dinner honoring the 50 year legacy of the Pell Grant program during the Association’s 2022 Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day.
 
After having helped create the Pell Grant, Rice set her mind and energy toward lobbying Congress to pass the legislation that would create the program.  The passage of the Pell Grant into law was neither easy nor expected.  It was through Rice’s tenacity, and that of the bill’s advocates and sponsors, that the program was approved and funded.  Her work rightly earned her the moniker, “Mother of the Pell Grant,” to complement Senator Pell’s recognition as the program’s founding father.
 
“As we celebrate the 50 year legacy of the Pell Grant program and the impact it has had on more than 80 million students, it is important to remember the pioneers who made this program possible for students,” said NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.  “Lois Dickson Rice’s advocacy for the notion that federal funds should follow the student is a proven idea today that empowers millions of low-income and first generation students every year.”
 
The NAICU Advocacy Award was established to recognize individuals who have championed the cause of independent higher education. The recipient of this award has provided leadership, established resources, or enacted policy at the state or national level that recognized the role of independent colleges and universities in serving public purposes. No single contribution makes one eligible to receive the award, it recognizes a lifetime of service, initiative, and determination.
 
Rice’s daughter, Ambassador Susan Rice, accepted the award on behalf of the family.
 
“My brother John and I are deeply gratified to accept this award on behalf of our late mother, Lois Dickson Rice,” Ambassador Rice said. “I’m fortunate to have played many roles over the course of my life and career, but one of the titles of which I will always be proudest is to be the daughter of “the Mother of the Pell Grant.”
 
Ambassador Rice continued: “Passing Pell took tenacity. It took patience. It took passionate advocates—from students to community college presidents, from an aristocratic Rhode Island Senator to a dogged Black female College Board executive—to achieve. When you consider how many Pell recipients have gone on to shape so many other lives—as doctors, lawyers, and artists, as engineers and public servants—as college presidents—the true impact of Pell is incalculable.”  (Complete prepared remarks)
 
In addition to Ambassador Rice, two recipients of Pell Grants, Suzanne M. Rivera, Ph.D., president of Macalester College (MN), and Michelle Vasquez, a student at Trinity Washington University (DC), also spoke at the dinner.
 
Rivera described arriving at Brown University (RI) with a suitcase given to her as a high school graduation gift, a trunk and a black garbage bag containing bedding from home.
 
“I wasn’t sure what to expect of college life,” she said.  “I imagined it would be academically rigorous and I thought there would be parties. But I didn’t know how unfamiliar it would feel to me because I didn’t understand the cultural landscape of the academy– something we now sometimes call “the hidden curriculum of higher education.”
 
She continued: “Despite the challenges of adjusting to life at an elite college, I knew it was a privilege to be there.  I went to lectures given by world leaders, artists, and thinkers whose names I recognized only from newspapers and books.  I joined student organizations and clubs.  I got a summer research internship.  I began to think of myself as a scholar.  None of this would have been possible without my Pell Grant, and for that I am deeply grateful.”
 
Rivera’s college experience was transformative for her and her family.
 
“I know that the liberal arts education I received in college fundamentally changed me,” she said. “It opened my mind and my heart to new experiences.  It introduced me to people I never would have met (including my spouse, with whom I co-founded a club for students on financial aid).  It encouraged me to take intellectual risks.  Above all, it gave me the tools to forge a career focused on advancing opportunities for other talented and deserving students, who– by happenstance of birth– are unable to afford college tuition.
 
Moreover, the Pell Grant program had a profound impact on her family as two of her younger siblings attended private colleges with the support of Pell Grants – a sister went to Sarah Lawrence College (NY) and a brother went to Roger Williams University (RI).  Eventually, her single mother enrolled in college – at age 42– with a Pell Grant and completed her degree at Brandeis University (MA) while working two jobs and parenting a younger brother who is intellectually disabled.  (Complete prepared remarks)
 
A native of Washington, DC, Vasquez talked about her college pathway from a high school sophomore unware of college to graduating college senior.
 
“I raised the idea of college with my family, and I am thankful to have received their full support and continuous prayers for me until this day,” she said.  “However, unresolved was how I would pay for college.  Senior year, I began to apply to colleges, and I also applied to some scholarships. Actually, a lot of scholarships. In fact, a little over 130 scholarships – I was very motivated!”
 
Vasquez said she was inspired by the idea that she would be the first in “my entire Latino family to go to college” and “I would be the main role model for my younger brother who would be next in this journey.”
 
“My Pell Grants have been instrumental to my attendance at Trinity since 2019,” Vasquez said.  “And now I am honored to share that because of the Pell Grant support and my financial aid package at Trinity, I will be graduating as Student Government Council President, as an honors student, and with a secured position to work as a consultant at Accenture upon graduation.”
 
She continued:  “Had it not been for my Federal Pell Grants, my chances of going to college would have deteriorated significantly. Because of my Pell grants, I have unlimited options for choosing a fulfilling career path and paving a more dignified and safer future for my immigrant, hard-working family that would have been unimaginable to that sophomore high school Michelle.”  (Complete prepared remarks)
 
Lois Dickson Rice Background
 
Fifty years ago, while working at what is now the College Board, Rice helped create the Pell Grant, working directly with the program’s namesake, Senator Claiborne Pell (D-RI).  Rice and Sen. Pell were of the mind that a simpler and more empowering method for low-income students would be to provide direct aid to them based on income and not merit.  The students would then be able to use the aid at the institution that best fit their individual needs.  As Rice recalled in an interview many years later, “we were not anti-institution, we were just pro-student.”
 
Rice broke away from the higher education pack.  At the time, the prevailing wisdom was that federal student aid funding should go to institutions to determine which students should get aid.  Rather than adhering to the status quo, Rice advocated for the novel concept that federal support in higher education should be put in the hands of students, who in turn would use it at the college of their choice. 
 
Fifty years later, the Pell Grant program has made college possible for millions of Americans and enjoys broad bipartisan support.  Recent polling suggests that 60% of Americans are familiar with the program, and 87% support the Pell Grant.  Forty-two percent have either received a Pell Grant themselves or have a member of their immediate family who received a Pell Grant.  This is an extraordinary degree of recognition for any federal program.
 
Rice was born to immigrants from Jamaica who had big dreams for their children’s education, despite their own work as a janitor and maid.  Her future success was foreshadowed early on as student council president, valedictorian and the student voted “Most Likely to Succeed” at Portland (Maine) High School.  She went on to attend Radcliffe College, where she was elected student body president and graduated in 1954. 
 
Rice’s distinguished professional career included rising through the ranks to become an executive at the College Entrance Examination Board (now the College Board). After a lengthy career there she became a higher education scholar at the Brookings Institution, where she published numerous works on federal higher education policies, directed the Think Tank Consortium, and led an effort to promote racial diversity at public policy organizations.  Having served on numerus well-known boards, both corporate and non-profit, Rice was a pioneer for many women and minorities seeking similar leadership positions in America. 
 

February 25, 2022

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Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) Presented With 2022 Henry Paley Memorial Award

Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) Presented With 2022 Henry Paley Memorial A...

February 25, 2022

Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) received NAICU's 2022 Henry Paley Memorial Award during the Association’s 2022 Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day.
 
“Sen. Roy Blunt has long been a strong supporter and advocate for private, nonprofit higher education and college students everywhere,” said NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.  “As we approach the 50th anniversary of the Pell Grant, Sen. Blunt’s support of the program generally, and his efforts to increase both the maximum award and its total funding, specifically, have made him a Congressional champion of this critical student aid program.”
 
Named for Henry Paley, president of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities of New York from 1975-1984, the award recognizes an individual who embodies Paley’s spirit of unfailing service toward the students and faculty of independent colleges and universities. Paley Award recipients have set an example for all who would seek to advance educational opportunity in the United States.
 
“I want to thank you for the award and for the hard job you do,” Sen Blunt told the audience of largely private, nonprofit university presidents in accepting the award.  “You need to be standing up strong for what independent higher education does for America and for the students you uniquely get a chance to serve.”
 
“One of the great strengths of the post-World War II higher education system, from the VA grants right after the war to Pell Grant 20 years later, is that they have been available to all accredited institutions,” Blunt continued.  “Competition is a good thing, choice is good thing in higher education.”
 
Sen. Blunt serves on the Senate Committee on Appropriations and has been chairman or ranking member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education since 2015.  In those roles, he has been a champion for increased access to higher education through the Pell Grant program, the foundation of federal student aid programs, and worked to increase funding for biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health.
 
Under Sen. Blunt’s leadership, the Pell Grant maximum award has been increased by $670, from $5,825 in FY 2016 to $6,495 in FY 2021. This represents a $2 billion increase in Pell Grant funding over five years.
 
The FY2022 appropriations bill, which is currently working its way through Congress, would increase the maximum grant by an additional $400, to $6,895.
 
In addition, after hearing from constituent students about their struggles staying enrolled in the summer, Sen. Blunt led the effort to reinstate “Year-Round Pell,” which had been eliminated in 2010.
 
Sen. Blunt’s stanch support for the private, nonprofit college sector has been demonstrated through the years in many ways, both large and small. He was instrumental in ensuring that private colleges and their students received COVID relief funding in the three bills that included Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds. Sen. Blunt’s support of equitable treatment by the federal government for all colleges, whether public or private, nonprofit is steadfast, and anchored in his personal experience.
 
After growing up on his family’s dairy farm, Sen. Blunt went on to be the first in his family to graduate from college, earning a degree from Southwest Baptist University (MO). He became a history teacher, a county government official, and Missouri’s Secretary of State, before returning to Southwest Baptist University as its president from 1993–1996.
 
Sen. Blunt was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1996 to represent the 7th District of Missouri, which includes the Ozark Mountains. He rose quickly through the Republican Party ranks to be elected Majority Whip in 2003, and remained in leadership roles throughout his tenure. When Sen. Blunt was elected to the Senate in 2010, he was chosen by his colleagues to join the Senate leadership during his first year in office. He currently serves as chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, and has been the lead Republican on the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration since 2015, whether in the majority or the minority.
 
Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) received NAICU's 2022 Henry Paley Memorial Award during the Association’s 2022 Annual Meeting and Advocacy Day.
 
“Sen. Roy Blunt has long been a strong supporter and advocate for private, nonprofit higher education and college students everywhere,” said NAICU President Barbara K. Mistick, D.M.  “As we approach the 50th anniversary of the Pell Grant, Sen. Blunt’s support of the program generally, and his efforts to increase both the maximum award and its total funding, specifically, have made him a Congressional champion of this critical student aid program.”
 
Named for Henry Paley, president of the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities of New York from 1975-1984, the award recognizes an individual who embodies Paley’s spirit of unfailing service toward the students and faculty of independent colleges and universities. Paley Award recipients have set an example for all who would seek to advance educational opportunity in the United States.
 
“I want to thank you for the award and for the hard job you do,” Sen Blunt told the audience of largely private, nonprofit university presidents in accepting the award.  “You need to be standing up strong for what independent higher education does for America and for the students you uniquely get a chance to serve.”
 
“One of the great strengths of the post-World War II higher education system, from the VA grants right after the war to Pell Grant 20 years later, is that they have been available to all accredited institutions,” Blunt continued.  “Competition is a good thing, choice is good thing in higher education.”
 
Sen. Blunt serves on the Senate Committee on Appropriations and has been chairman or ranking member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education since 2015.  In those roles, he has been a champion for increased access to higher education through the Pell Grant program, the foundation of federal student aid programs, and worked to increase funding for biomedical research at the National Institutes of Health.
 
Under Sen. Blunt’s leadership, the Pell Grant maximum award has been increased by $670, from $5,825 in FY 2016 to $6,495 in FY 2021. This represents a $2 billion increase in Pell Grant funding over five years.
 
The FY2022 appropriations bill, which is currently working its way through Congress, would increase the maximum grant by an additional $400, to $6,895.
 
In addition, after hearing from constituent students about their struggles staying enrolled in the summer, Sen. Blunt led the effort to reinstate “Year-Round Pell,” which had been eliminated in 2010.
 
Sen. Blunt’s stanch support for the private, nonprofit college sector has been demonstrated through the years in many ways, both large and small. He was instrumental in ensuring that private colleges and their students received COVID relief funding in the three bills that included Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds. Sen. Blunt’s support of equitable treatment by the federal government for all colleges, whether public or private, nonprofit is steadfast, and anchored in his personal experience.
 
After growing up on his family’s dairy farm, Sen. Blunt went on to be the first in his family to graduate from college, earning a degree from Southwest Baptist University (MO). He became a history teacher, a county government official, and Missouri’s Secretary of State, before returning to Southwest Baptist University as its president from 1993–1996.
 
Sen. Blunt was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1996 to represent the 7th District of Missouri, which includes the Ozark Mountains. He rose quickly through the Republican Party ranks to be elected Majority Whip in 2003, and remained in leadership roles throughout his tenure. When Sen. Blunt was elected to the Senate in 2010, he was chosen by his colleagues to join the Senate leadership during his first year in office. He currently serves as chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, and has been the lead Republican on the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration since 2015, whether in the majority or the minority.
 

February 25, 2022

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About the items posted on the NAICU site: News items, features, and opinion pieces posted on this site from sources outside NAICU do not necessarily reflect the position of the association or its members. Rather, this content reflects the diversity of issues and views that are shaping American higher education.

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