New Rowan University Program Provides Free Tuition for Students in Low-Income Families

By: Michael Mandarino, Follow South Jersey Managing Editor

Photo via Rowan University

GLASSBORO, N.J. — The new Rowan University Opportunity Program will allow students in low-income families to receive a four-year undergraduate degree for free.

New Jersey residents who will be first-time freshmen in families with an adjusted gross income of $45,000 or fewer are eligible to participate in the Rowan University Opportunity Program. Students must register full course loads for the fall 2021 and spring 2022 semesters and be eligible for full federal and state aid through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). They’re also required to submit their FAFSA by June 1.

“The Rowan Opportunity Program expands access to a high-quality, four-year education for talented students who might not otherwise be able to attend college,” Rowan Senior Vice President for Enrollment Management Jeff Hand said in a press release. “Obtaining a higher education degree changes the life of a student and also can positively impact the life of an entire family.”

Launching the Rowan University Opportunity Program is the latest measure the university has taken to make a four-year degree more affordable for its students. Last summer, Rowan announced a 10% tuition cut for in-state and out-of-state undergraduate students. It directly cited the coronavirus pandemic and its devastating impacts on families as the main reason for cutting tuition costs.

Additionally, the state of New Jersey passed legislation in late February that guarantees tuition-free community college for students in families with an adjusted gross income of $65,000 or fewer through the Community College Opportunity Grant. New Jersey’s higher education student assistance authority will cover the costs of eligible students through this program.

“For far too long, higher education has been out of reach for countless New Jerseyans due to its high cost,” Governor Phil Murphy said after announcing the Community College Opportunity Grant. “Today’s bill signing underscores our continued commitment to college affordability, ensuring that our young people and working adults have the opportunity to earn post-secondary degrees and advance their promising careers.”

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