Legislation Introduced to Expand Pell Grant Eligibility to Grad Students

On February 9, Representatives. Haley Stevens (D-MI) and Jimmy Gomez (D-CA) introduced the Pell to Grad Act. Key provisions of the legislation include extending students’ lifetime Pell Grant eligibility to 16 semesters from the current 12 semesters and allowing students who have received a Pell Grant award during their undergraduate education to utilize their remaining Pell eligibility towards their first graduate degree.

Rep. Stevens said in a press release on the legislation, “For many students, completing college in the traditional 12 semesters is not a reality. Expanding Pell eligibility by four semesters means that the students who need it most have another chance to complete their degrees. We also know that advanced degrees are key to filling the jobs of the future. I hear from business owners across SE Michigan that they are eager to hire and have high-wage jobs in the advanced manufacturing sector just waiting to be filled. This bill will help students get the degrees they need to succeed and become a part of America’s next generation of workers and thinkers, ready to meet the demand of the future.”

In the previous two congresses, CGS advocated for the Expanding Access to Graduate Education Act, which would allow the use of remaining Pell Grant funds for graduate studies. CGS will also support the recently introduced Pell to Grad Act.