Daily News

UMass Financial Aid to Students Grew to $395 Million This Academic Year

AMHERST — The University of Massachusetts awarded $395 million in university-generated financial aid across its five campuses this academic year — $22 million more than last year and $185 million more than a decade ago, with 81% of this aid going to Massachusetts residents, who comprise 73% of the 74,000-student UMass community.

“Keeping a UMass education world-class and affordable is our highest priority,” UMass President Marty Meehan said. “As a driver of economic mobility for our students and the Commonwealth’s greatest single source of talent, this is our primary mission.”

The $395 million in university-generated aid includes grants funded by university sources — nearly three times the amount of grant aid provided by the state and federal governments ($137 million). All of the funding directly reduces the ‘sticker price’ for students.

Meehan said growing financial aid is one piece of a larger effort to lower the financial barriers to a UMass education. Others include early-college programs that provide students with a head start on earning college credits while still in high school, holding annual tuition increases well below inflation, and a new initiative (included in the governor’s recent budget proposal) to lock in undergraduate in-state tuition rates for four years.

Meehan added that the university’s innovative efficiency and effectiveness efforts, which have saved $90 million across the five-campus UMass system since 2020, have been critical in keeping student costs down and growing financial aid. “I want to commend our chancellors and their teams for their stewardship of taxpayer, family, and donor dollars, which has allowed them to redirect resources to student aid and services.”

Meehan also praised the Healey-Driscoll administration for its budget proposal seeking a major increase in state-supported financial aid and student-support funding, as well as legislative leaders who have proposed new investments in public higher education. “There is a growing recognition that the University of Massachusetts and the rest of public higher education in Massachusetts are absolutely critical to maintaining the Commonwealth’s competitive edge.”