Washington College Grant: most generous financial aid program in the country

The Seattle Times’ Katherine Long reports (https://www.seattletimes.com/education-lab/110000-washington-students-a-year-will-get-money-for-college-many-a-free-ride/) on the recently passed Workforce Education Investment Act and Washington College Grant.

110,000 Washington students a year will get money for college, many a free ride

It’s a “unique and brilliant” approach, said college-aid expert Sara Goldrick-Rab, a Temple University professor and author of “Paying the Price: College Costs, Financial Aid, and the Betrayal of the American Dream.” She called the bill “pretty much the most progressive state higher ed funding bill I’ve seen at the state level in years.”

It may be “the most generous-promise financial aid program in the country” — not just because of the award amounts, but also because of the different ways the money can be used, said Rachelle Sharpe, deputy executive director of the Washington Student Achievement Council, which oversees financial aid.

For example: The grant aid can be used by any Washington resident who qualifies, who doesn’t already have a bachelor’s degree, and who wants to earn something less than a full degree (such as a certificate) at a community college. It can be used at 66 schools in Washington (including many of the state’s private universities) and allows students to go part-time. It also covers apprenticeships.

– Washington Student Achievement Council

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