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Governor McCallum, HEAB
Committed to Making a Difference

January 22, 2002

In these tough budget times, Governor Scott McCallum and the State of Wisconsin are committed to making a difference in the lives of its citizens who are attending post-secondary educational institutions in-state. Wisconsin has made a significant commitment to helping needy students in the past and, with the most recently passed State budget, it has renewed that commitment and made it stronger. Governor McCallum announced recently that he would provide for an increase of $2 million for the Wisconsin Higher Education Grant. Under the leadership of Governor McCallum, Wisconsin has budgeted more than $65 million in financial aid in 2001-02 and over $67 million in 2002-03 to assist residents in attaining their goal of a college degree or certificate.

There are three main grant programs that serve the largest number of Wisconsin resident students. They are the Wisconsin Higher Education Grant (WHEG), the Wisconsin Tuition Grant (WTG) and the Talent Incentive Program Grant (TIP). The WHEG program provides grants to financially needy resident undergraduate students enrolled at least half-time at a University of Wisconsin, Technical College or Tribal College located in Wisconsin. The WTG program provides grants to financially needy resident undergraduate students enrolled at least half-time in a private, non-profit college or university in Wisconsin. The TIP grant is intended to expand the educational opportunities for disadvantaged students and to encourage those students to attend post-secondary education institutions in Wisconsin.

Our valuable financial aid programs have touched and enhanced the lives of hundreds of thousands of Wisconsin residents by making a college education a reality. Between 1990-91 and 2000-01, over 564,000 WHEG, WTG and TIP program awards have been made totaling over $335 million.

In addition, there are numerous other grant and scholarship programs aimed at assisting different sectors of the population. The Hearing and Visually Handicapped Student Grant, Indian Student Assistance Grant and Minority Undergraduate Retention Grant are all targeted at helping the neediest of students in Wisconsin.

There are various other programs in place to aid Wisconsin residents. The Minority Teacher Loan and the Teacher of the Visually Impaired Loan Program offer forgivable loans to students who want to work in professions that educate others. In the 2002 academic year with the approval of Governor McCallum, a new forgivable loan program, the Nursing Student Loan, will assist students who want to work in a profession that is dramatically understaffed in Wisconsin.

Governor McCallum announced last week that he is proposing a $2 million increase for the 2002-03 academic year in the WHEG program to further assist students with education related costs. This increase in funding is in addition to the generous annual increases he approved in the recently passed 2001-03 budget. Not only has the Governor increased the funding for the WHEG program, he also proposes to retain the 2.5 percent annual increase in the WTG. The Governor also proposes that the 4.5 percent annual increase for the Minority Undergraduate Grant and the Minority Teacher Loan be retained.

The Higher Educational Aids Board feels very fortunate that Governor McCallum is so steadfastly committed to funding college financial aid in Wisconsin. It would have been easy for him, in a time of tight budgets, to cut funding in this vital and important area. Instead he has taken this opportunity to establish education and educational funding as one of his highest priorities. His commitment to the citizens of Wisconsin should not be overlooked.

Jane Hojan-Clark
Executive Secretary
Higher Educational Aids Board

 

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