Annual State of Student Aid Report Covers Pre-Pandemic and Pandemic-Impacted Progress and Statistics

Round Rock, TX – Trellis Company’s published the 2022 State of Student Aid and Higher Education in Texas (SOSA) report. SOSA provides updates on recent demographic, economic, and postsecondary education changes that are driving trends in Texas workforce development. Federal actions affecting student debt and financial aid, like the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF), the FAFSA Simplification Act, and the student loan repayment pauses, have been especially influential in Texas. The report also shows that unemployment rates have returned to pre-pandemic levels after peaking in 2020 at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In a highly competitive and ever-changing Texas economy and workforce, the SOSA provides key insights to help inform higher education professionals, institutions, and policymakers as they work to address the challenges of ensuring Texans have the skills needed for the jobs of today and tomorrow. Updated annually, the report features critical data and information about college readiness, college access and success, loan repayment, and consumer debt, which allows stakeholders to forecast trends, shifts and potential pitfalls,” said Trellis President and CEO, Debra Chromy, Ed.D.

The report provides insight into the impact of the state’s shifting demographic, economic, and educational landscape on higher education.

Notable data points from Trellis’ 2022 SOSA include:

  • Students pursuing a bachelor’s degree at a Texas public university would have to work 75 hours per week at minimum wage to pay for their education solely through work earnings based on 2020-2021 costs.
  • Student loan debt in Texas continued to rise through 2021, but delinquency has declined dramatically since early 2020 due to COVID-19 relief measures.
  • Tuition increases at Texas’ public four-year institutions between 2008 and 2019 were lower than the national average (26 percent vs 35 percent) and were also smaller than many of the six largest states.
  • The average Pell grant in Texas covered only 18 percent of the average cost of attendance for undergraduates at public four-year universities and public two-year colleges in Texas in AY 2020-2021.

Also of note, about a third of Texas adults have a bachelor’s degree or higher, and higher education graduation rates continue to increase. However, the percent of Texas high school graduates enrolling in college immediately after high school has been declining somewhat for the past decade. Efforts like the recent state law requiring Texas high school seniors to complete the FAFSA that went into effect this past school year are designed to encourage high school students to enroll in college.

“The report shows how changes, some gradual and other fast-paced, influence the lives of so many Texans, especially as they embark on new careers,” commented the study’s lead author, Carla Fletcher.

The SOSA is available to download as a complete PDF and as single-page highlights, in addition to an easy-to-navigate mobile version, which provides quick access to information wherever related discussions are taking place.

The mobile-friendly version, single-page highlight PDF, and full report PDF download can all be accessed at


About Trellis Company
Trellis Company is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation focused on connecting people to education-to-employment pathways that transform their lives. The company’s mission is to develop and advance initiatives that grow individual economic mobility and expand community prosperity. For more than 42 years, we have delivered positive outcomes for students and institutions. Through our vision and mission, we are building on this history to impact a greater number of people and the communities where they live.

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