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Fiscal Service Launches Analysis of Federal Investment in Higher Education

July 17, 2019

Washington, D.C. – The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service (Fiscal Service) today launched an analysis on federal investment in higher education. Using interactive data visualizations on the bureau’s Data Lab website, the analysis provides the public with an overview of the federal government’s more than $145 billion investment in higher education in FY 2018 including over $98 billion dollars invested in federal student aid.

“In FY 2018, more than 3,000 schools and 17 million students received funds from the federal government,” said Justin Marsico, Deputy Assistant Commissioner for Data Transparency. “The Data Lab analysis is divided into three categories of federal spending for higher education, and helps the public understand how the money was spent, and which institutions received funding.”

In a user-friendly format, the analysis displays data from three categories of federal investments, including student aid, grants, and contracts, using interactive data visualizations to help users make sense of the information.

Users will be able to compare the flow of federal dollars from federal agencies to colleges and universities across the country, and toggle between data from research grants, contracts, and more. While the site currently provides only fiscal year 2018 data, more information will be added at a later date. Explore the analysis at and its sister site promote transparency in government by providing spending data available to all citizens. Using a storytelling approach combined with data visualizations, site visitors can dig into federal spending data across a variety of topics including homelessness analysis, competition in federal contracting, and much more.

To learn more about the Fiscal Service, visit and follow us on Twitter @FiscalService and @USAspending.

Last modified 01/31/23