The Sellinger Program
For almost 240 years, Maryland’s independent nonprofit colleges and universities have been an integral part of the State’s system of postsecondary education. For the past 50 years, support has been provided to our 13 state-aided institutions through the Sellinger Program. The Program awards State aid to independent colleges through a formula linked to enrollment and to the per-student appropriation of selected four-year public institutions. This self-adjusting formula links independent institutions in Maryland with the other segments of higher education in a cooperative partnership that stands out as a national model.
Sellinger funds are used to support Maryland’s goals for higher education as established in the State Plan for Postsecondary Education. The vast majority of these funds (approximately 90%) are used to provide need-based grants and scholarships to students who live in Maryland. However, it is not enough to get a student through the front door of the institution in order to succeed; students also need services and supports throughout their academic careers. Therefore, Sellinger funds are also used to provide, for example: career preparation and advising; social justice advocacy opportunities; health counseling; expanded STEM, teaching, nursing, and public safety leadership curriculum; exposure to community-based redevelopment; and multicultural and diversity training.
As a result of this longstanding partnership, and the targeted and innovative ways in which our institutions use their Sellinger funds, Maryland students have greater access, choice, and opportunity to enroll in a college that best fits their needs and ensures the earnest pursuit of their dreams.
During the Legislative Session of 2020, the General Assembly appropriated more than $69.6 million for the Sellinger Program in fiscal 2021, an increase of 18% (or $10.6 million) over the previous fiscal year’s appropriation. However, on July 1, 2020, the Board of Public Works (BPW) reduced this appropriation by $10.6 million and mandated level-funding for our institutions in accordance with the (outdated) fiscal 2020 student enrollment counts. See here to read the letter that MICUA submitted to the BPW in opposition to the cut. See here to watch the BPW meeting during which the proposed reductions were discussed.
In fiscal 2021, MICUA requested, and was granted, $12 million in capital improvement grants from the State to support three renovation and construction projects – an investment which will leverage more than $36 million in private resources and support more than 350 new construction jobs. These grants will support capital projects at Johns Hopkins University, Maryland Institute College of Art, and Notre Dame of Maryland University. These projects are well-aligned with the goals identified in the latest Maryland State Plan for Postsecondary Education and support important local initiatives in Baltimore City. Once completed, these academic facilities will provide future employment for faculty, researchers, staff, and student workers. Read more
Federal Student Aid
Adequate funding for Pell Grants, campus-based aid, and student loans remains a top priority for Maryland’s independent colleges and universities and is essential to the future strength and competitiveness of the nation. As Congress considers changes in this area, it must protect the essential role of federal student aid in providing access, choice, and opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students regardless of family income. Read more
Maryland Student Aid
The State of Maryland has an extensive array of financial aid programs in the form of grants, scholarships, and other awards for students who want to further their education beyond high school. To learn more about the State’s financial aid programs, click here.