Access Missouri budget funding increasedGovernor estimates program will affect 46,000 students this spring alone.
In mid-January, Mo. Gov. Nixon announced an increase in the budget for Access Missouri to approximately $58.7 million. In a statement, Gov. Nixon said about 46,000 students will benefit from the program this spring semester alone.
"I am certainly pleased with the increased funding," said Dr. Gerald Brouder, Columbia College president, "even if the amount has been reduced. As an educator, I understand the importance of this fund to students in assisting them achieve their goals and dreams."
Last year, Gov. Nixon proposed eliminating the program altogether. In April 2010, a letter-writing campaign that garnered more than 100 Columbia College students signatures was partially responsible for keeping Access Missouri alive.
For the 2010-2011 academic year, the annual Access Missouri award amounts are $1,900 for students attending independent institutions like Columbia College, $275 for students attending public two-year institutions and $950 for students attending public four-year institutions.
A student at Columbia College formerly could receive up to $4,600 through Access Missouri, compared to $2,850 for public institutions. At the end of the 2009-10 academic year, more than 1,800 Columbia College students had received funding for their education through the program.