The state of Minnesota devotes most of its financial aid to students from low- and moderate-income families. In Fiscal Year 2012, Minnesota students received almost $164 million in state need-based aid:
- $142.8 million in Minnesota State Grants was made to 95,500 Minnesota residents attending Minnesota postsecondary institutions as undergraduates.
- $5.8 million in Postsecondary Child Care Grants were made to 3,050 undergraduates.
- $88,000 to the survivors of safety officers killed in the line of duty.
- $845,000 in Minnesota GI Bill awards to 550 veterans.
The state subsidizes a number of work study programs at schools around the state. In 2012, about 11,100 students earned $19.2 million in state work study jobs (includes 25 percent employer share of earnings).
Minnesota also operates a state loan program, the Student Educational Loan Fund (SELF), for students and families who have exhausted or do not qualify for need-based aid. In Fiscal Year 2012, 14,100 Minnesota students borrowed approximately $85.4 million in SELF Loans.
In 2011, financial aid totaling $3.4 billion helped Minnesota students and families pay for postsecondary education. The money was provided by the state and federal governments, colleges, and private sources. Minnesota students received $1.5 billion in grants or scholarships, $1.7 billion in student loans, $161 million in parent loans, and $46 million through work study earnings.