MAP grant change helps colleges keep Illinois students in the state
Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation co-sponsored by Sen. Anderson that gives the state’s colleges and universities tools they need to attract in-state students with improved financial aid plans, a more liberal application of credit transfers, and increased student counseling supports.
HB 5020 revises MAP to give priority access for eligible returning students. MAP renewals are awarded annually throughout a student’s post-secondary education but now there will be a priority consideration for existing recipients. Nearly 130,000 students received MAP grants in FY18 and all but graduating students may be eligible for priority status in FY19.
Rauner also signed SB 2354, which makes it easier for thousands of students to transfer credits from one Illinois school to another. The new law encourages institutions to counsel students more closely on how best to apply credits toward degrees and requires students who submit 30 or more credits to declare their degree interest so that the schools can advise on the best path to completion.
The idea is to help prevent students from spending time and money on needless credits.
“These laws will strengthen our universities and most importantly, it tells our students in Illinois that we want them here,” Sen. Neil Anderson (R-Andalusia) said. “By making college more affordable and attractive, these laws can be the first step in reversing the trend of our talented students going out of state.”