Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 73.04
Liaison Troy Goodnough
Submission Date March 30, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Minnesota, Morris
PA-7: Affordability and Access

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.59 / 4.00 Troy Goodnough
Sustainability Director
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

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

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

Morris serves a significant number of low-income students, with over 30% of our population being Pell eligible.

We provide a holistic approach to services and counseling for our students.

Morris participates in all available state and federal financial aid programs and we offer need-based institutional scholarships.

Additional information:

Ninety-three percent of UMM students receive financial aid from a variety of public and private sources. The campus is regularly recognized as an affordable “best buy” in higher education, graduating students with more manageable levels of loan debt than peer institutions.

UMM is committed to providing sufficient financial assistance to meet the full financial
need of each student and works actively to minimize the student’s dependence on student loans.

Staff encourage and assist all students in completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to qualify for grant and scholarship aid. Financial Aid encourages students to use Federal Work Study instead of loans when available and possible.

UMM has the largest percentage of students in the University of Minnesota receiving the U Promise Scholarships for high need and middle income Minnesota residents. The program serves Pell eligible students from Minnesota, combining federal, state,and institutional grants to cover a high portion of students cost of attendance, up to 100% of tuition and required student service fees for high EFC students

UMM offers a tuition waiver for American Indian students, mandated in federal and Minnesota laws rooted in founding of the campus in the late 1800s as an American Indian boarding school.


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

Given our campus size and demographics -- and the responsibility of campus faculty to do academic advising, the faculty routinely consult with the financial aid office to answer questions low-income students may have.

Morris’s long-standing commitment to serving historically underrepresented students is rooted in the founding of the college in 1960 as an affordable, accessible public alternative to private liberal arts colleges. A number of faculty and staff are themselves first generation college students, many from low-income backgrounds who are attracted to the campus mission and vision. These staff serve as role models and mentors for low-income students. Faculty members work closely with students as their faculty advisers and routinely consult with financial aid staff to provide the best advice and support for low-income students. Workshops are provided to help faculty advisers understand the potential impact on financial aid package when students change their credit load during the semester.

Additionally, Morris has a master advisor program which provides extra training for some faculty advisors to better serve our low-income students.


A brief description of the institution’s programs to guide and prepare students and families from low-income backgrounds for higher education:

More than half of UMM’s students of color are from low income backgrounds, compared to one in three Caucasian students. The Office of Equity, Diversity and Intercultural programs leads a long-time credit bearing summer bridge program called Gateway that provides academic and holistic support for students transitioning from high school to college and serves primarily students of color. Gateway students receive support through their first year of college and beyond. The program has shown great success in supporting the retention of participating students, many of whom are low-income and first-generation students, early in their college experience. Participants’ first and second-year retention rates are consistently above other students of color and for some cohorts above the student population as a whole.


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

Institutional scholarships are available and awarded based on need as determined by FAFSA results.

Examples of institutional programs to assist low-income student are: the UPromise Program, which is tied to EFC (estimated family contribution) and AGI, and also the University Grant program. Both of these programs provide funding that is directed toward our low-income students.


A brief description of the institution’s targeted outreach to recruit students from low-income backgrounds:

Morris recruits in a number of underserved, high need rural and urban communities across the state of Minnesota and beyond. With the Office of Equity and Diversity, the Admissions staff hosts groups serving high need and historically underrepresented populations for campus visits.


A brief description of the institution’s other policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:
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Does the institution have policies and programs to support non-traditional students?:
No

A brief description of the institution’s scholarships provided specifically for part-time students:
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A brief description of the institution’s on-site child care facility, partnership with a local facility, and/or subsidies or financial support to help meet the child care needs of students:
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A brief description of the institution’s other policies and programs to support non-traditional students:
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Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (tracking accessibility and affordability)? (If data is not available, select 'No'):
Yes

The percentage of entering students that are low-income (0-100):
34

The graduation/success rate for low-income students (0-100):
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On average, the percentage of need that was met for students who were awarded any need-based aid (e.g. as reported to the U.S. Common Data Set initiative, item H2) (0-100):
75

The percentage of students graduating with no interest-bearing student loan debt or for whom no out-of-pocket tuition is required (i.e. the percentage of graduates who have not taken out interest-bearing loans) (0-100):
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Estimated percentage of students that participate in or directly benefit from the institution’s policies and programs to support low-income and non-traditional students (0-100):
34

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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Morris has been recognized for being particularly effective in meeting the needs of the population we serve. Morris was specifically called out in this report by the Midwestern Higher Education Consortium. Here is a quote from the report:

"University of Minnesota-Morris is the most effective and
the most efficient (based on the six-year graduation
rate)." (for colleges in Minnesota)

http://www.mhec.org/sites/mhec.org/files/eerptmn.pdf

http://www.morris.umn.edu/financialaid/grants/ (about University Grant)
Students from MCSP/AlertPlus program mostly considered, making the estimate conservative (about 145 students).

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.