Statement on College Loan Announcement
Eliminating Loans is Important but Student Voices are Still Being Ignored.
This week, Grinnell College announced that they will be replacing loans with scholarships in all financial aid packages starting Fall 2021. This is an important decision that will make a Grinnell education much more affordable and accessible, and should be celebrated as a major victory for students. Although in the announcement President Harris focused solely on the decision of the Board of Trustees, we know that this decision would not have happened without the powerful, sustained advocacy of students, especially low-income students and student workers. This includes UGSDW’s ongoing Lost Jobs campaign, which has engaged in action throughout the summer and fall pushing administrators to provide jobs and work-study grants this year for students who lost their jobs in the spring and haven’t been able to work on campus.
While the college’s decision this week was an important step for the future, student’s immediate needs this year are still not being met, and there are many other important issues on campus that the administration must address, like demands for racial justice. In the future, the administration must show they value student voices by not just helping students, but actively engaging with student voices and demands. No matter what, UGSDW will continue to organize and fight to build student worker power on campus, and win more victories like this for students.