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UVa Responds to Report Criticizing the University

May 9, 2013

The University of Virginia is responding to a new report that says the school is not letting in enough low-income students.

The report, released Wednesday by the New America Foundation, looks at the average price paid by students who come from low-income families, and also at the percentage of undergraduates receiving federal Pell Grants, which serve families with the most financial need.

The report found that just 13 percent of UVa students have Pell Grants, and the average price they pay is about $3,500 per year.

The report suggests schools like UVa would rather admit students based on merit alone, rather than make college more affordable for low-income students.

UVa responded to the report, saying its financial aid program, AccessUVa, has addressed the problem.

"Since AccessUVA began in 2004, Pell recipients have increased by 848 students or 80 percent, and the number of low income students has increased by 541 students or 70 percent."

UVa says 85 percent of Pell recipients graduate from the University, which is higher than the national average for universities.

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