Washington, DC – Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) President Peter McPherson today released the following statement regarding President Biden’s budget proposal.
“We appreciate many of the critical investments President Biden’s FY2022 budget proposal makes in higher education and research. The president’s budget calls for essential investments that would help millions more Americans attain a college education while increasing funding for research that yields lifesaving therapies and lifechanging innovations.
“We appreciate the administration’s proposal to increase the maximum Pell grant award by $400 as part of its commitment to doubling the maximum grant, as well as the proposal to extend eligibility to undocumented students. Crucially, the budget proposal also boosts investments in Historically Black Colleges and Universities and other Minority Serving Institutions as well as TRIO and GEAR UP. Together, these critical investments would advance college access, equity, and completion. Unfortunately, the proposal would not make the needed increases in campus-based aid programs, Federal Work Study and Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants, which are critical components of a package to increase access, affordability, and success of low-income students.
“Additionally, APLU continues to urge policymakers to consider federal-state partnership proposals that provide support to students at all public institutions of higher education, both two- and four-year. An effort to address affordability in the public sector by creating incentives for states to invest more just in community colleges leaves many behind and runs the risk states would not increase support for higher education overall, but instead just redirect support in alignment with new federal incentives.
“The request’s proposed historic increases for federal research agencies will foster innovation and fuel long-term economic growth. As examples, the proposal makes historic investments in the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, establishing new programs to speed discoveries from the lab to consumers and patients. We also appreciate many of the increases to critical agricultural research programs that enhance food security and health while advancing environmental sustainability and economic growth. Federal investment in science and technology is a cornerstone of U.S. economic leadership and these investments will help the U.S. to lead in key sectors such as health, technology, and manufacturing.
“We appreciate many of the investments the proposal would make in higher education and research. These investments are core to promoting economic growth and achieving broadly shared prosperity.”