MAP Matters to Students and Illinois

College is expensive. However, the Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP) grant hasn’t kept up with the cost of college, putting college out of reach for many low-income students. This has been exacerbated by the impact of the COVID economic crisis, which has resulted in a steep drop in attendance at community colleges and among low income students due to a lack of affordability. In 2002, MAP covered 100 percent of tuition and fees at public colleges and universities, making higher education more affordable for hundreds of thousands of students.  Today, due to rising tuition and state budget cuts, a MAP grant covers about two-thirds of tuition and fees at public colleges and universities. To make matters worse, MAP repeatedly runs out of funding, leaving over 80,000 eligible students without a MAP grant every school year. 

Illinois’ legislative session is almost over so they are finalizing the next year’s state budget. Urge your legislators to commit to putting an additional $50 million toward MAP for FY 2022—and don’t forget to add your personal MAP story to your letter!