News & Media

Washington Update

ED Releases HEERF 2021 Annual Performance Report 
The Department of Education released its annual performance report for the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF). In April 2022, APLU released a policy brief, “HEERF Works: How Grants Have Supported Students at Public Research Universities,” providing more descriptive information about how APLU member institutions used these funds.

The new Department of Education report focuses on how the funds helped keep students enrolled, tuition costs down, faculty and staff stay employed, and slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The report does not include 2022 HEERF expenditures – institutions will submit their annual reports to ED later this year with 2022 data.

Key findings in the HEERF 2021 Annual Performance Report data include:

  • In 2021, institutions distributed $19.5 billion in Emergency Financial Aid Grants to 12.7 million students, including 80 percent of Pell Grant recipients;
  • Approximately 9 in 10 IHEs reported that HEERF enabled them to keep students who were at risk of dropping out enrolled by providing financial support;
  • Roughly 3 out of 4 institutions indicated that HEERF enabled them to keep student net prices similar to pre-pandemic levels;
  • More than 2 in 3 IHEs indicated that HEERF allowed them to keep faculty, staff, employees, and contractors at full salary levels; and
  • Nearly 3 in 4 IHEs stated that HEERF enabled them to purchase COVID tests, provide health screenings, and provide the healthcare necessary to help support students, faculty, and staff.   

Department of Education Announces First Postsecondary Student Success Grants
The Department of Education announced the grantees for its new Postsecondary Student Success Grants, a federal program supporting evidence-based approaches to increasing college completion. Among other awardees, APLU member Florida International University was named a grant recipient. The first round of grants stemmed from an appropriation of $5 million in the Fiscal Year 2022 appropriations omnibus. Congress provided a significant boost to the program, $45 million in funding, in the Fiscal Year 2023 omnibus measure passed in December. The Department will likely begin soliciting applications later this summer and fall for FY23 funding.

USCIS Releases FY2023-2026 Strategic Plan
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services released its FY2023-2026 Strategic Plan. The plan identifies three long-term goals to focus on increasing access to the immigration system; promoting and improving the naturalization process; attracting, recruiting, developing and retraining an effective workforce; creating a culture of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility; ensuring fiscal solvency; and continuing modernization efforts that introduce additional online filing options. The three overarching goals are to:

  • Strengthen the U.S. immigration system to ensure that immigration policies, regulations, strategies, processes, and communications support a strong immigration system with integrity that promotes integration, inclusion, and citizenship;
  • Invest in workforce to attract, recruit, train, and retain a diverse, flexible, and resilient workforce that drives high-quality organizational performance and is representative of who we are as a nation; and
  • Promote effective and efficient management and stewardship to enhance organizational capability for efficient and effective use, management, and sharing of resources entrusted to the agency, and to evaluate and balance competing demands and priorities to serve the agency’s mission.   
  • Council on Governmental Affairs

Subscribe to RSS

Browse By Date

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun