A Guarantee of Tuition-Free College Can Have Life-Changing Effects
Adam Harris, The Atlantic
A new study finds that a few extra dollars on a university’s part might go a long way in terms of changing that calculus for low-income students. The working paper, published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, examined the effects of a targeted-outreach campaign for low-income students at the University of Michigan.
The campaign, known as the High Achieving Involved Leader (hail) Scholarship, encourages highly qualified, low-income students to apply to the university, promising them four years of education free of tuition and fees. Students are sent a personalized mailing with all of the information, which costs the university less than $10 each to produce and send out; the students’ parents and school principals are also contacted separately. And the offer of free tuition isn’t contingent upon filling out financial-aid forms such as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.