Double the Pell

UC Davis Campus and Student Leadership Asks Congress to Double the Pell

Dear UC Davis Community,

On behalf of campus and student leadership at the University of California, Davis, we write to affirm our support of the University of California and UC Student Association’s Double the Pell effort. Pell Grants are the primary way that the federal government helps low-income students afford college, and this vital program was started to ensure that anyone who wants to earn a college degree could do so.

In 1980, Pell Grants covered more than 75 percent of the cost to attend a 4-year public university. Today, the maximum Pell Grant award covers just 28 percent of the cost to attend a 4-year public university. For the past five decades, Pell Grants have helped approximately 80 million people go to college and it is imperative that Congress restore the purchasing power of Pell Grants by doubling the amount of the maximum award and then indexing the grants to inflation.

With the health, economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, students across the country are struggling more than ever with basic needs and access to affordable food, housing, health care, child care and other essentials. Higher levels of direct federal aid offered through Pell Grants will help ease these substantial burdens that students are experiencing nationwide.

As such, we call on Congress to double the maximum Pell Grant, thereby demonstrating lawmakers’ commitment to investing in higher education and reducing significant financial barriers for low-income students to attend college. We are also advocating to permanently restore the Pell Grant’s automatic annual inflation adjustments, which would provide predictable annual increases to prevent future erosion of the Pell Grant’s purchasing power from future generations of students.

On June 23, there’s a lot to celebrate: The nation’s most important program for college affordability turns 50! Beginning June 1 and continuing throughout the month, we will celebrate the anniversary of the Pell Grant while underscoring the need to #DoublePell. Whether you are a student Pell recipient, an alum whose education was made possible because of Pell, or a community member who believes that education elevates everyone, you too can be an advocate for this change by adding your name to the University of California and the UC Student Association call to Congress to make doubling the Pell Grant a priority in the federal budget. Join the UC Advocacy Network (UCAN) today to receive updates about how you can support this important effort, and help ensure that future generations can also experience the #PowerOfPell

Thank you for your consideration.


Gary S. May, Chancellor, University of California, Davis

Pablo Reguerín, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, University of California, Davis

Shruti Adusumilli, ASUCD External Affairs Vice President

Cayley Chan, Student Advisor to the Chancellor

Pavan Gill, Fund the UC Coordinator

Ryan Manriquez, ASUCD President

Jonathan Minnick, Graduate Student Association President

Priscilla Reis, UC Advocacy Network, Campus Ambassador

Henry Adrian Rozo, UC Advocacy Network, Campus Ambassador

Sana Sayyid, Student Advisor to the Chancellor