Georgetown and other universities accused of violating Higher Education Act

Georgetown, alongside 111 other schools, was violating the Higher Education Act by not telling students they did not need to fill out the CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE, which costs a minimum of $25, to receive federal financial aid, according to a letter Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) sent to Education Secretary Arne Duncan.

According to the Huffington Post, universities use the PROFILE form to calculate financial aid by colleges or state governments, but students only need the Free Application for Federal Student Aid for federal financial aid.

In the letter, Cummings wrote: “These institutions appear to be establishing additional requirements for students to complete costly additional forms, including the fee-based PROFILE form developed by the College Board, to be considered for any financial aid. Congress banned this practice in 1992 because it creates undue hurdles for students seeking federal student aid.”

Georgetown had not made the distinction clear on the website, though that has since changed.

“It has never been our intention to suggest to prospective students or their families that the PROFILE is required for federal aid,” Rachel Pugh, director of media relations, told Vox. “This week we learned that we could make these directions more clear on some of our financial aid websites.”

h/t Huffington Post

Photo: The Bent Tree via Flickr

One Comment on “Georgetown and other universities accused of violating Higher Education Act

  1. I didn’t think anyone thought that they had to fill out the Profile for federal aid. But let’s be honest – Pell Grants are a max of like what, $2-3 thousand? Sure, you don’t need to fill out the profile, but if you don’t there goes $60,000 of potential aid.

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