To the Editor:
As a student who has participated in the campus-wide movement to reform financial aid, I was excited to see that President Levin has finally decided to commit to one aspect of the financial aid platform. It’s nice to know that, after pressure from Yale students and the media, the University has realized that reform is essential in order to attract the best applicants.
However, Yale’s financial aid policies are still not sufficient. Along with the 14 other students demanding to meet with President Levin last Thursday, I had hoped financial aid reform would involve the “big picture.” A reduction in the parent contribution creates a small section of this picture and looks great alone but the overall picture of financial aid still looks unappealing to many.
Yale cannot expect to be a leading institution concerned with financial aid when so many of its students are forced to work 15-plus hours each week. Yet, the expected student contribution has remained unaltered by the announced changes. Yale’s refusal to diminish the student contribution is simply unacceptable.
I thank the University for reducing the expected parent contribution but I will continue to demand financial aid reform until all qualified individuals are able to attend Yale without sacrificing extracurricular activities and academic performance merely to pay tuition. Financial aid has not progressed nearly as much as it should but the announced reforms can pave the way for other changes. We, the students of Yale University, can consider President Levin’s announcement as the first victory in our battle for a better Yale.
Amy Wojnarwsky ’07
March 3, 2005