Two B-Schools Adopt Reduced and Free Tuition Models

Rutgers University in New Jersey and Saint Joseph's University in Philadelphia implement free or reduced tuition programs.

Like Arizona State University, diverse programs at other universities in the United States also are moving to free and reduced tuition models.

Two examples:

  • Rutgers University–Camden in New Jersey will dramatically reduce or eliminate undergraduate tuition for state residents through a new program called “Bridging the Gap.” Students who graduate from high school in 2016 and come from families with an adjusted gross income of US$60,000 or less are eligible to apply for the grant program, which will cover tuition and general campus fees; students from families earning between $60,000 and $100,000 are eligible for grants that cover half of their college costs.

    The tuition is being funded in two primary ways, says Mike Sepanic, associate chancellor for external relations. “First, each student must apply for federal aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Once students receive their federal aid awards, which are financed by the government, we will cover the balance of the tuition from existing scholarship funds.” Of the nearly 1,600 students on the Camden campus, 75 percent are undergraduates; of these, 25 percent are business students.

    “Given that nearly two-thirds of our undergraduate students are first-generation students, the ‘Bridging the Gap’ program will help us bring an excellent business education to a larger population in South Jersey,” says Jaishankar Ganesh, dean of Rutgers School of Business–Camden. “Eventually this will result in a highly diverse, vibrant, and well-educated workforce.”

    “Bold moves are necessary to counter the real debt challenges that face college graduates across the nation,” adds Camden Chancellor Phoebe Haddon. “Our program offers a pathway to achieve a Rutgers degree regardless of socioeconomic status. This is the historical promise of American higher education system.”

  • Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, will offer free tuition to veterans who enroll in a specialized program. Earlier this year, SJU was accepted into the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) program, founded in 2007 at the Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University and operated by Syracuse’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families.

    This spring, SJU’s Haub School of Business will welcome its first class of post-9/11 military veterans with disabilities into the program, which consists of online and on-campus instruction, as well as a year’s worth of mentoring. Assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration, corporate partners, and donors will allow the first class of up to 25 participants to attend the program without cost.