Bill Would Give Students More Choices & Spur Entrance into the Workforce

Written by Theresa Rose on March 9, 2017

Loebsack Continues Effort to Support Students Relying On Pell Grants For College Education & Training

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Dave Loebsack today continued his effort to give more flexibility to students receiving Pell Grants by introducing the Flexible Pell Grant for 21st Century Students Act. This legislation will allow Pell Grant recipients to take advantage of the grants year-round. In 2007, Loebsack was the author of a provision that created year-round Pell Grants in the Higher Education Opportunity Act, which was signed into law in 2008. However, because of budget cuts, the year-round Pell Grant was eliminated in 2011. This bipartisan bill is cosponsored by Representatives Cheri Bustos (IL-17), Elise Stefanik (NY-21) and Carlos Curbelo (FL-26).


“As someone who would not have been able to attend college without the help of student aid, I was proud to author the original year-round Pell legislation that was signed into law in 2008,” said Congressman Dave Loebsack.  “After visiting schools across Iowa, I have heard from countless students whose ability to afford college would be significantly improved by the availability of year-round Pell grants. I look forward to reducing barriers to higher education institutions by restoring this important program. This bill would help provide Iowa’s students with the necessary training and resources required to be successful in the 21st century global economy.”


Under current law, a student who goes to school full-time during the fall and spring semesters would not be eligible to receive Pell Grant awards for summer courses. Many of those who would benefit most from the Flexible Pell Grant for 21st Century Students Act are non-traditional students who want to complete their courses faster so they can get back into the workforce.


Loebsack, Bustos, Stefanik and Curbelo introduced this bill in response to the continued demand for increased Pell Grant flexibility from local students and community colleges that offer year-round programs.