Majority of Adults Age 18-34 Opposed to Cuts to Pell Grants and Loan Subsidies
Most adults age 18 to 34 in the United States oppose cuts to the Federal Pell Grant program and view college as harder to afford today than it was five years ago, according to a survey commissioned by The Institute for College Access & Success (TICAS), Demos, and Young Invincibles.
“This survey clearly shows how young adults view higher education today: it’s more important than ever but also less affordable, and it comes with too much debt,” TICAS President Lauren Asher said. “Whoever they are and whatever they earn, young adults share these concerns and see college affordability as a top priority for Congress and the economy.”
The nationwide survey of 872 adults age 18-34, responding from Sept. 25 to Oct. 4, 2011, found that 76 percent of young adults believe that college has become harder to afford in the past five years, and 73 percent say that graduates have more student debt than they can manage.
Of those surveyed, including individuals with and without a college degree, 80 percent said having a degree is more important than it was 10 years ago.
Those numbers correspond with the proportion of respondents who oppose cuts to the Pell Grant program and agree that college affordability should be a top priority in Congress.
“Even when presented as ways to reduce the federal deficit, three in four (75 percent) young adults do not want to see Pell Grants cut, and 73 percent oppose charging students with financial need interest on their federal loans before they graduate,” the report states. “More than two thirds of all young adults (68 percent) say college affordability should be Congress’ top priority.”
The report found that of those surveyed, those that feel that higher education is more difficult to afford, student loan debt is too high and Congress should not cut student aid come from all political, racial, ethnic and financial backgrounds.