$111m Down Payment on Tuition-Free Higher Ed

$111m Down Payment on Tuition-Free Higher Ed

The Department of Labor recently awarded more than $111 million in America’s Promise Grants to 23 regions throughout the country. Altogether, more than 21,000 Americans will benefit from these awards, which enable communities to form collaborative partnerships to build tuition-free pathways to education and training for 21st Century jobs.

These grants are designed to build a pipeline of skilled workers in high-demand industries such as healthcare, financial services, and information technology. Nine community colleges are among the recipients of these awards, which were inspired by President Barack Obama’s America’s College Promise plan to make the first two years of community college free for responsible students.

The College Promise Campaign, which promotes the creation of free community college programs at the state and local level, enthusiastically looks forward to supporting these grant recipients as they navigate and build blueprints for student access and success.

Already, local collaboration between leaders in business, government, education and nonprofit organizations has propelled the rapid growth of College Promise Programs throughout the country.  In just one year, the number of state and local College Promise programs — which provide tuition-free education allowing  students to start and complete a community college education without taking on a mountain of debt — have grown to more than 150 in 37 states.

The Campaign is excited that the community college grant recipients will be moving forward with their own plans to build College Promise programs.

“America’s Promise Grant recipients are building a bright future for college access and affordability,” said College Promise Campaign Executive Director Martha J. Kanter. “ Their vision builds on the successes achieved by scores of College Promise programs across the nation. Their work will expand and improve those efforts, delivering the security of an affordable education to more students.”

Community Colleges receiving the award include:

  • MiraCosta Community College District in Oceanside, CA: $6m
  • Delaware Technical Community College in Dover, DE: $3.5m
  • Florida State College at Jacksonville, Jacksonville, FL: $1.8 m
  • Montgomery College, Rockville, MD: $5.6m
  • Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Rapids, MI : $6m
  • CUNY, New York, NY: $6m
  • Monroe Community College, Rochester, NY: $6m
  • Alamo Community College District, San Antonio, TX: $2m
  • Northern Wyoming Community College District, Sheridan, WY: $5M

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