48 States Have Cut Higher-Ed Funding Since Recession

All but two U.S. states have reduced higher-education funding since the recession. Find out which states are holding the line.

48 States Have Cut Higher-Ed Funding Since Recession Photo (cc) by COD Newsroom

All but two U.S. states — Alaska and North Dakota — have reduced higher-education funding since the recession, according to one nonprofit’s analysis.

Young Invincibles, a nonprofit organization that aims to empower young Americans with health care and economic information, also gave 19 of those 48 states an “F” in its third annual State Report Cards, released Thursday. That number of “failing” states is up by 11 since last year.

The annual report evaluates each state based on its support for public higher education.

Young Invincibles calls states’ lack of investment in higher education “the main driver in our student debt crisis,” explaining in a news release:

Three-quarters of our nation’s students attend public colleges, which rely on stable budget support and sound policies from state legislatures to provide affordable, quality education.

But since the Great Recession, states have slashed their higher education budgets, and now students and families are shouldering the burden.

The states that have made the largest cuts to higher education in the years since the recession (2008 to 2014) are:

  1. Louisiana: -41 percent
  2. Alabama: -39 percent
  3. Pennsylvania: -37 percent
  4. South Carolina: -36 percent
  5. Arizona: -36 percent
  6. Idaho: -33 percent
  7. New Hampshire: -33 percent
  8. Florida: -32 percent
  9. Nevada: -31 percent
  10. Oregon: -29 percent

The states that have made the smallest cuts include two states that actually increased funding. The states on this list are:

  1. North Dakota: 38 percent
  2. Alaska: 6 percent
  3. Indiana: -4 percent
  4. New York: -5 percent
  5. Montana: -5 percent
  6. Wyoming: -5 percent
  7. Nebraska: -6 percent
  8. Arkansas: -6 percent
  9. Illinois: -9 percent
  10. Vermont: -11 percent

If you or your child is burdened by student debt, be sure to visit the Money Talks News Solutions Center, where you can get help with student loan debt, among other types of debt.

If you need help reducing public or private higher education expenses, don’t miss:

How do you feel about your state’s level of support for public higher education? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.

Karla Bowsher
Karla Bowsher
I’m a freelance journalist and former newspaper reporter who has covered both personal and public finance. I've worked for a top 50 major metro daily and a community newspaper as well as ... More

Trending Stories


957 Active Deals

More Deals