Loan Agency Boosts Funding To Fend OffSallie Mae

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HARRISBURG, Pa. - (02/03/05) -- The Pennsylvania Higher EducationAssistance Agency, trying to fight off a hostile takeover by SallieMae, said it will increase grants to the state's college studentsand working adults by $55 million this year. The not-for-profitagency said it plans to use earnings from its student loan businessto fund the new grants, with the amount rising each of the nextfour years. The agency said $45 million will go towards collegetuition grants and $10 million toward creating a new program forworking adults in need of job training. The expanded grant programcomes as PHEAA is trying to fight off a $1 billion takeover bySallie Mae, which was rejecetd by the PHEAA board. Sallie Maeexecutives were lobbying lawmakers this week to override theboard's decision.

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