Higher Education:

Selected Information on Student Financial Aid Received by Legal Immigrants

HEHS-96-7: Published: Nov 24, 1995. Publicly Released: Nov 24, 1995.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on student financial aid to legal immigrants, focusing on the: (1) number of legal immigrants that received student aid during 1992 through 1993 and the amount of aid they received; (2) states in which these grant recipients lived; and (3) types of schools they attended.

GAO found that: (1) in academic year 1992 to 1993, about 390,000 legal immigrants received Pell grants totalling $662 million, which was about 10 percent of the total number of Pell grants available; (2) about 28 percent of immigrant Pell grant recipients also received about $257 million in Stafford loans, which accounted for about 6 percent of all Stafford loans and about 5 percent of all recipients who received both types of financial aid; (3) the total number of legal immigrants that received Stafford loans could not be determined because citizenship data is not kept on such recipients; (4) legal immigrants received slightly larger Pell grants and Stafford loans than U.S. citizens; (5) about 82 percent of immigrant Pell grant recipients lived in 7 states; (6) 61 percent of immigrant recipients attended public colleges, 19 percent attended private colleges, and 21 percent attended proprietary schools; and (7) 100 schools accounted for 50 percent of all immigrant Pell grant recipients and 91 of these schools were located in the 7 states with the highest concentration of immigrant students.

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