Asheville Reporter

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Saturday, March 28, 2020

North Carolina's financial aid programs need overhaul, auditors say

Schools

By Glenn Minnis | Nov 8, 2019

College5

Lawmakers in North Carolina are being urged to amend some of the state’s rigid student financial aid requirements.  

The Center Square reports that among the changes being supported by state program auditors in hopes of increasing the overall number of students deemed eligible for programs like the Education Lottery Scholarship are upgrades to record-keeping on loan programs and greater overall funding.

“The State Education Assistance Authority (SEAA) seeks to promote access and reduce costs for students, but challenges exist that prevent fully expending state appropriations for educational financial aid,” said Adora Thayer, an evaluator for the Program Evaluation Division.

SEAA oversees the approval and disbursement of financial aid and loan forgiveness across the state. According to AffordableColleges.com/, the average cost of a four-year degree in North Carolina stands at around $85,000.

Thayer argues that lawmakers can increase the amount of aid available to students by extending the number of students who are eligible for the Education Lottery Scholarship and increasing the maximum expected family contribution.

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