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Illinois has a budget: ISAC programs funded

On July 6, 2017, Illinois passed a final budget, ending a two-year delay that created significant challenges and uncertainty for students and colleges throughout the state. The budget includes funding for the Monetary Award Program (MAP) and other ISAC grant and scholarship programs, as well as funding for Illinois public higher education institutions.

The final budget provides MAP funding for Fiscal Year 17 (the 2016-17 school year) at the FY15 level of approximately $365 million. ISAC is working to ensure that FY17 MAP claims are paid as quickly as possible.  Particularly if you are a student who paid the costs your MAP grant was meant to cover during the 2016-17 school year, it’s important to note that individual colleges handled the delay in MAP funding for FY17 in different ways and individual circumstances may vary. If you have questions, we encourage you to contact your college’s Financial Aid, Bursar or Student Financial Services office to see how your individual situation will be addressed.

The budget also increases MAP funding to approximately $401 million for FY18 (2017-18 school year). Having this funding at the beginning of the fiscal and school year will be tremendously helpful in providing certainty that grant dollars will indeed be available to those students who received a MAP award on their financial aid award letters for the 2017-18 school year.

We are pleased to note that the final budget also includes FY17 and FY18 funding for other grant, scholarship and loan repayment programs that ISAC administers, including the Grant Programs for Dependents of Police, Fire or Correctional Officers, Golden Apple Scholars of Illinois Program, and Minority Teachers of Illinois (MTI) Scholarship Program. Students with specific questions about how their school will disburse funding for these programs should contact their college’s Financial Aid, Bursar or Student Financial Services office.

In addition, funding has been provided for the Illinois Teachers Loan Repayment Program, Nurse Educator Loan Repayment Program, and the Veterans’ Home Medical Providers’ Loan Repayment Program.  More information about these programs will be posted on our website in the coming days.

ISAC has worked with many students over the last two years who have had to make exceedingly difficult decisions about how—and if—they could attend school without grant and scholarship funding. To all Illinois students and families, we understand the sacrifices you have made; we commend you for your resilience and for your commitment to your education and to your future. We look forward to processing grant funds this fall, providing more certainty to the students of Illinois, and to continuing our work to make college more accessible and affordable.

Questions about MAP or other ISAC programs? Check out the “Get to Know MAP” video on the home page of our website, or contact ISAC Student Services at 800.899.ISAC (4722) isac.studentservices@isac.illinois.gov