College Free Tuition: Hillary Clinton Joins Gov. Cuomo For Signing Ceremony

Some students are happy to hear that state lawmakers approved a plan to provide free college tuition for the middle class, while other students and lawmakers say it may hurt taxpayers.

In the fall, undergrad students who attend State University of NY or City University of NY establishments will be eligible for the Excelsior Scholarship if their families earn no more than $100,000 a year. That threshold jumps to $110,000 next year and $125,000 in 2019. To avoid paying back loans, students must stay in NY for the same amount of time they received free tuition in college.

But New York will be the first state to make tuition free for some residents at four-year public colleges.

Governor Cuomo announced the scholarship in January alongside Senator Bernie Sanders.

Although there are many unanswered questions about the Excelsior Scholarship Program, both the president of SUNY Canton and SUNY Potsdam are excited about the program since so many of their students come from NY state. On-campus room and board can run at $12,590 at this year's rates as well.

Mellow sees this as a healthy incentive for students: "The data are incontrovertible: The faster you can get a student through college, the more likely they are to graduate".

The legislation for the Excelsior Scholarship was passed as part of the state's 2018 budget and is set to take effect in the fall of 2017, according to a press release from the governor's office.

His promise to make tuition free for everyone who attends state universities helped draw huge crowds of young people to his campaign rallies and forced nomination rival Hillary Clinton to endorse some of his progressive policies, including on university tuition. Their families must earn no more than $100,000.

NY has the largest public college system in the country with 443,000 students.

"There was $19 million invested in the enhanced tuition program that they created for privates". Students would be required to take 30 credits a year to maintain the scholarship, which would exclude part-time students. "It's an idea that's going to reverberate not only throughout the State of NY but throughout this country". "Tuition fee is a huge burden and it's great they won't have to come out of school with those loans". It also won't cover undocumented students, who now aren't eligible for state financial aid.

  • Leroy Wright