Jesse Tomkiewicz and Carlos Sanchez had a simple but powerful message for Harrisburg: Invest in education.
The first-year Allegheny College students were among the more than 225 students from more than 30 private nonprofit colleges and universities who traveled to the state capital on April 4 as part of Student Aid Advocacy Day, sponsored by the Association of Independent Colleges & Universities of Pennsylvania. The annual event gives students from AICUP-member institutions a chance to meet legislators and encourage them to support private colleges and universities. Allegheny has been sending student representatives for at least the past five years.
This year’s event focused primarily on opposing a 50% proposed cut in institutional assistance grants, maintaining funding of PHEAA grant program, and growing the Ready to Succeed Scholarship program to benefit more middle-income students.
Tomkiewicz and Sanchez spent the day meeting with staff members from the offices of Rep. Brad Roae, Rep. Mike Schlossberg, Rep. Peter Schweyer, Sen. Michele Brooks, Sen. Pat Browne, and Gov. Tom Wolf. At each meeting, they handed out fact sheets and information detailing how financial assistance helps students at private colleges and universities, including Allegheny, and the return on investment in higher education.
For Sanchez, an 18-year-old economics major from Allentown, Pennsylvania, the issue is a personal one. (more…)