CHICAGO —The decision to preserve funding for the state’s Monetary Award Program, announced yesterday by Gov. Pat Quinn in his annual budget address to the Illinois General Assembly, was being applauded by the Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M., president of DePaul University in Chicago.
MAP is a scholarship program for low income Illinois students to attend the college of their choice. In 2011-2012, about 150,000 students received MAP grants to attend public and private universities and community colleges. Some 58 percent of these students have no other resources to pay tuition.
“Students from low income families rely on the state’s MAP program along with federal Pell grants to attend college,” Holtschneider said. “We are grateful that Gov. Quinn’s budget protects this valuable investment as a key component of the state’s workforce training and economic development strategy.”
According to the Illinois Student Assistance Commission, the need-based MAP program is central to the state’s ability to meet the goal of having 60 percent of its adult population obtaining a formal, post-secondary credential by 2025.
“Recent reductions in the amount of funding available for MAP grants have forced many students to suspend their educations,” Holtschneider said. “Our state’s economy will become more reliant on a highly educated workforce in the future and we cannot lose this competitive advantage while we wait for the state’s budget situation to improve. I hope the General Assembly agrees with Gov. Quinn and votes for full funding of the Monetary Award Program.”