Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 66.39
Liaison Shane Stennes
Submission Date Dec. 15, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
PA-8: Affordability and Access

Status Score Responsible Party
2.82 / 4.00 August Horner
Sustainability Student Asst
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have policies and programs in place to make it accessible and affordable to low-income students?:

A brief description of any policies and programs to minimize the cost of attendance for low-income students:

The University of Minnesota Promise Scholarship (U Promise) is the University of Minnesota's guaranteed commitment to Minnesota undergraduate students whose families make up to $100,000 per year. There are two types of scholarships under the U Promise umbrella: the U Promise Free Tuition Scholarship, and the U Promise Middle Income Scholarship that provide assistance to low-income students.


The University also provides many other scholarships which base their selection on financial need.

A brief description of any programs to equip the institution’s faculty and staff to better serve students from low-income backgrounds:

TRIO Upward Bound is a college preparatory program for low-income and educationally disadvantaged high school students. TRIO Upward Bound works with students on a long-term and intensive basis and helps generate the skills needed for selected high school students to succeed in post-secondary education.

A brief description of any programs to prepare students from low-income backgrounds for higher education:

TRIO Upward Bound (TRIO UB) is an academic and college preparatory program funded by the US Department of Education. The purpose of TRIO UB is to develop the skills and motivation necessary for selected students to successfully complete high school and to enter and succeed in college. We provide intensive, year-round academic services and enrichment activities to prepare students holistically for success in college. We are currently funded to serve 118 low income and first generation college-bound Minneapolis 9-12th graders from North, Edison and South High Schools. TRIO UB at the University of Minnesota has served Minneapolis youth and families since 1966. Services include:
During the school year
Tutoring intervention services Monday – Thursday
Four non-credit academic courses by grade
Student & parent educational workshops and meetings
Leadership and cultural capital skill building activities
College access and readiness advising
In-school advocacy
Local college and university tours
During the summer
Five weeks of non-credit academic instruction for rising 10-12th graders.
Three weeks of a residential living experience at University of Minnesota residence halls
Six weeks UB “Bridge” for graduated high school participants who will start college in the fall.
Leadership and cultural capital skill building activities
STEP UP Explore - Explore summer employment program
Annual regional college tour
5-day STLF Pay It Forward Service trip

A brief description of the institution's scholarships for low-income students:

As described in the University of Minnesota's "Principles to Guide the Financial Aid Programs of the University":

"Financial aid packages will be tailored to each student’s circumstances and may include a variety of forms of need-based and/or merit-based aid from numerous funding sources including, but not limited to, University funds, federal and state aid programs, external scholarships and donor-directed funds."

One significant financial aid program serving low-income students is the U Promise Scholarship. The University of Minnesota allocates about $30 million annual to U Promise scholarships, system-wide.

From the U Promise program FAQ (http://onestop.umn.edu/finances/financial_aid/scholarships/resources/UPromiseFAQs.html):

"The U Promise Scholarship has provided gift support to low and middle income University students since 2005. Students are automatically considered for these scholarships by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In 2009, the program was expanded to include all Minnesota-resident undergraduates with family incomes up to $100,000.

Awards for the 2015-2016 academic year will range from $750 to $4,000, with higher awards directed to students with the greatest financial need. The amount of your award is based on your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) as determined by your FAFSA."

A brief description of any programs to guide parents of low-income students through the higher education experience:

The University's Parent Program works with parents to help them understand the student experience, support student learning, and empower students to take personal responsibility for their social and academic choices. This program provides information about health and safety, transportation, financial matters, academics, and student career planning. The Parent Program is open to all University parents to assist in their transition; there is no program specifically for parents of low-income students.


A brief description of any targeted outreach to recruit students from low-income backgrounds:

When Office of Admissions counselors visit high schools, although they visit schools across the state of Minnesota annually, they target high schools with significant enrollments of students participating in the federal free lunch program to ensure that these populations of students receive information about the University, the application process, and financial aid. Additionally, counselors encourage students to apply for financial aid at Visit Presentations, Application Workshops, and at numerous Admitted Student events. The Office of Admissions also collaborates with One Stop Student services to offer financial aid information sessions to students and families regarding how to pay for college. Finally, the University participates in College Goal Sunday, a national event that provides free, on-site professional assistance in completing the FAFSA.

A brief description of other admissions policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

An overview of costs, financial planning considerations, and financial aid programs for students can be found on the OneStop Student Services web site at: http://onestop.umn.edu/finances/index.html.

As a public institution, the University supports access for qualified students, and its review of applicants for undergraduate admissions is need-blind. A student’s ability to pay is not a factor in determining admissibility.

The University of Minnesota's Board of Regents Policy on Student Financial Aid (http://regents.umn.edu/sites/regents.umn.edu/files/policies/Student_Financial_Aid.pdf) lays out guiding principles for financial aid at the University of Minnesota:

"Subd.1.Guiding Principles.

In the conduct of its student financial aid programs, the University shall:

(a) award financial aid to students on the basis of merit and of need;
(b) assist as many students as possible in securing grants, scholarships, loans, and employment and provide counseling in the use of such resources to help finance their education;
(c) aggressively seek additional aid funds; and
(d) maintain straightforward application and disbursement processes that protect the individual's right to privacy."

A brief description of other financial aid policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

A brief description of other policies and programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students not covered above:

Does the institution have policies and programs in place to support non-traditional students?:

A brief description of any scholarships provided specifically for part-time students:

The University disperses scholarship awards in accordance with the University's financial aid award policy and also provides resources for finding outside scholarships. Grants and waivers are non-competitive aid that is set aside for students who qualify based on financial need or other criteria, with eligibility determined based on the FAFSA application.


A brief description of any onsite child care facilities, partnerships with local facilities, and/or subsidies or financial support to help meet the child care needs of students:

University of Minnesota Child Development Center
1600 Rollins Avenue SE
Minneapolis, MN
(612) 625-2273 The University of Minnesota Child Development Center (UMCDC), located a few blocks north of the East Bank Campus, is licensed by the state of Minnesota and has national accreditation through NAEYC, the National Association for the Education of Young Children. It cares for 140 children, ages 3 months to 5 1/2 years, or pre-kindergarten. Enrollees must be university affiliated faculty, staff, and/or students. Full-time child care is provided Monday through Friday from 7:15 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

A brief description of other policies and programs to support non-traditional students:

To ensure that you are ready for the start of the semester, we require all transfer students to participate in a two-step orientation process. By participating in orientation, you will:

Understand the academic and community expectations of a University of Minnesota student.
Feel more prepared to transition into the University.
Become acquainted with the resources available to University of Minnesota students.
Have a better understanding of the University of Minnesota student experience.
Be better able to take responsibility while enrolled at the University.
Meet new and current transfer students and start making connections.

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (accessibility and affordability indicators)?:

Indicators that the institution is accessible and affordable to low-income students::
Percentage (0-100)
The percentage of entering students that are low-income 21
The graduation/success rate for low-income students 49.70
The percentage of student financial need met, on average 72
The percentage of students graduating with no interest-bearing student loan debt 39

The percentage of students that participate in or directly benefit from the institution’s policies and programs to support low-income and non-traditional students:

The website URL where information about the institution's affordability and access programs is available:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.