Supreme Court Issues Decision on Higher Education Investment Fund

May 3, 2022

Dear UA Community,

Today, the Alaska Supreme Court issued its decision regarding the Higher Education Investment Fund [HEIF] -- the source for Alaska Performance Scholarships, needs-based grants and WWAMI funding. Although the Court did not reverse the lower court’s decision, we are proud of the strong case our students made. They are to be commended for the pursuit of justice on behalf of all University of Alaska students, and for fighting for their future and the future of fellow students.

We are not giving up. We have been simultaneously working to provide stability for HEIF funding and the programs it supports through legislative action. HEIF is too important, and must be protected for future students.  

We must ensure that our students have certainty for scholarships, grants, and loans going forward. We will dedicate our efforts to solving this issue by supporting HB 322, a bill that would effectively remove the fund from the state treasury so that it can’t be emptied by the end-of-session legislative sweep that emptied it last year. 

Protecting HEIF is truly what’s best for Alaska. Our state’s future is inextricably linked to the success of our people and their access to high-quality workforce training and higher education. Assuring predictable financial support for our students will position the university to meet Alaska’s future opportunities.

Pat Pitney

President, University of Alaska