Proposed LOAN Act Would Double Pell and Improve Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Plus New Report Shows Gaps for Black Community College Students

By The New England Council

DC Shuttle …

Lowering Obstacles to Achievement Now (LOAN) Act. U.S. Reps. Bobby Scott (D-VA) and Frederica Wilson (D-FL) introduced the Lowering Obstacles to Achievement Now (LOAN) Act “to lower the cost of college for current and future student borrowers and their families.” This proposed legislation would double the Pell Grant, improve the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program and make loans more affordable and accessible. Additional information can be found here.

Black Enrollment Declines, Gaps Increase. A new report released by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies this week documents disparities in academic outcomes for Black community college students. This report found that “while Black students disproportionately attend community colleges, their enrollment at these institutions has significantly dropped and gaps in their academic outcomes have more than doubled over time compared to their white peers.” Further, the report found that “enrollment among Black students fell 18% from fall 2019 to fall 2021, at the height of the pandemic, with an even sharper decline among men. Black male enrollment dropped 24%, relative to a 15% drop for Black women over that same time period.” The same report also found a significant disparity between the graduation rates of Black community college students and their non-Black classmates. Additional information can be found here.

We publish the DC Shuttle each week Congress is in session featuring higher ed news from Washington collected by the New England Council, of which NEBHE is a member. This edition is drawn from the Higher Education Update in the Council’s Weekly Washington Report of Sept. 26, 2022. For more information, please visit:


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