College students receiving Pell Grants are eligible for a temporary federal program that provides 50-dollars per month, or 75-dollars in Tribal areas, to pay for internet service. Jessica Rosenworcel of the Federal Communications Commission says too many college students, especially those attending community colleges, lack access to affordable and high-quality internet. She says her organization is working with local partners across the country to make sure people know about the benefit and how to sign up.
To apply online, visit ‘GetEmergencyBroadband.org’, or call 833-511-0311 for a paper application. According to the F-C-C, more than three million people already have signed up for the program. A list of broadband resources also is available at the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development’s website.
Rosenworcel says the program is just the beginning of future efforts to address inequities in broadband access.
According to a report by the Institute for Higher Education Policy, approximately 60 percent of Black and Hispanic students face significant challenges in paying for fast and stable internet, compared with 50 percent of white students, according to the report. The report also includes data indicating student parents and caretakers are much more likely than their peers to share computers with others.