Not a Drill, IT’S GOING DOWN. WTF?

Posted on April 5, 2011. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Here is the call-in script and the call-in number that we will be using for tomorrow. We will be calling our U.S.Senators tomorrow (I previously included representatives in my other email, but they are not the target because they are such a unified voting bloc on this that it doesn’t really make sense to spend too many resources on them. You are still welcome to call them of course, but for the broader efforts, call the Senate).

The script mainly focuses on the federal financial aid programs, so feel free to add or subtract things in there for your particular situation and campus, like protecting MSI funding or work-study.

Call-in Number to the Congressional Switchboard: 1-888-860-3224

-callers just need to ask for one of their 2 Senators by name, or say what state you’re calling from and they’ll patch you through to one of them

-try to have folks call BOTH of their Senators, but if they can only call one, try to have a balance.

-In terms of votes, it looks like we need 51 Senators on our side to not cut higher ed in order to make sure that it is preserved.

Here is a rundown of everything again just to clarify:

  • The current Continuing Resolution will expire on April 8th (this Friday), so negotiations are happening now to come up with a total dollar amount for cuts for the remainder of FY11.
  • After that overall number comes out, the details of where those cuts are coming from (like which programs) will be determined. The reason we need to be a voice is to make sure that higher education is not cut. We are not advocating for anything else to be cut, just saying that higher education should be preserved.
  • We are calling to ask that Senators vote NO on cutting higher education, including Pell grants, from the budget for the remainder of the Fiscal Year 2011.

United States Student Association

Where’s the Funding?!

April 6th Call in Script

The Script starts HERE

Federal Financial Aid at Risk of Cuts!

Why Should I care?

The current Continuing Resolution funding the United States government will expire April 8, 2011. This week, Congress and the White House are negotiating the overall amount in cuts they can agree to moving forward in the budget extension to fund the rest of fiscal year 2011. Earlier this year the House of Representatives proposed the largest cuts to the Department of Education in history, $11.5 billion. The federal government needs to do more to invest in higher education, not make draconian cuts to programs like the Pell Grant and TRIO.

Why are these programs so important?

Pell Grant: Helps ensure financial access to postsecondary education by providing up to $5,550 in grant aid to low and moderate- income undergraduate students.

TRIO: A collection of programs targeted at increasing underrepresented constituencies at institutions and ensuring these students have the support necessary to access and complete a college education.

Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (SEOG): Provides grant assistance of up to $4,000 per academic year to undergraduate students with demonstrated finacancial need.

On Wednesday April 6th, let your Senators know that we need a government that prioritizes students!

TELL YOUR SENATOR: NO on a budge extension that cuts student aid!

  • Call 1-888-860-3224 for the Senate switchboard operator and ask for one of your Senators.

  • Tell her or his office that you are a student constituent and urge them to vote NO on a budget extension that makes cuts to higher education! See a sample call-in script below:

“Hello, my name is _____ and I am a student at _____ (campus) and with the United States Student Association.  I am a Pell Grant/ TRIO/ SEOG recipient [if applicable] and a constituent concerned about the proposed cuts to student aid in the 2011 budget extension.

Pell/ TRIO/ SEOG is a vital component to my student aid. I’m among the hundreds of thousands of students who may not be able to complete college if these cuts are made (optional: tell them why Pell/ TRIO/ SEOG is important to you).

Please vote NO on a budget extension that makes cuts to student aid. Thank you for your time.”

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