College Promise Unveils National Policy Proposal Charting Path for Universal Access and Affordable College for All Americans

WASHINGTON, April 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Today, College Promise releases an ambitious proposal for a federal-state partnership.¬†College Promise for All lays out a plan to eliminate tuition and fees for eligible students seeking a postsecondary education at our nation’s public community colleges and 4-year colleges and universities and significantly limits the cost to attend private, not-for-profit 2- and 4-year institutions. The proposal includes all eligible Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal Colleges and Universities, and Hispanic-Serving, Asian American and Pacific Islander-Serving, and other Minority-Serving Institutions.

A high school education is no longer enough to build the knowledge and skills required for long-term career success. Millions of jobs remain unfilled across the country today, waiting for hardworking Americans to fill them. College Promise for All provides a well-lit pathway for Americans to align personal goals, education, and training programs with modern day career opportunities.

“Over the past five years, many community and statewide College Promise programs have grown and shown their effectiveness in reducing barriers to upward economic mobility, making it easier for students to enroll in and complete their college programs for high-demand, high-wage jobs,” said Martha Kanter, CEO of College Promise. College Promise for All builds on these high impact practices to accelerate nationwide access and completion to tuition-free college opportunities. To ensure that America remains competitive in the global marketplace, we must create and accelerate pathways to economic and social mobility that are accessible, affordable, and attainable for all. Doing so will build the skilled workforce and inclusive, prosperous communities badly needed for our nation’s future.”

Highlights of College Promise for All include:

  • Up to 120 credits or equivalent competencies with tuition and fee coverage available to each eligible American, including DREAMers, who have graduated high school or the equivalent but do not have a bachelor’s degree
  • Full coverage of community college tuition and fees with no income restrictions
  • Full coverage of 4-year public college tuition and fees for students from families with an income level of $125,000 or less
  • Partial coverage of private, not-for-profit 2- and 4- year institutions for students from families with an income level of $125,000 or less
  • A First-Dollar investment, allowing for tuition benefits to be stackable with other federal, state, and/or institutional aid which students can use to cover essential college costs beyond tuition and fees (e.g., transportation, food, housing, healthcare, childcare, books, and materials)

“The plan is a crucial step toward advancing equity in the United States by increasing access to and preparation for meaningful careers that provide a living wage without a mountain of college debt. We must position our country to meet the demands of the innovation economy supported by a College Promise for All. By reducing the financial barriers of entry and increasing access to higher education for all students, this framework outlines a vision for establishing a robust sustainable pipeline into the middle class while strengthening the U.S. economy and national security,” said Rosye Blancas Cloud, Senior Leader of College Promise. The proposal was informed by more than 100 researchers, economists, education leaders, and policymakers who provided feedback on the structure and design of a federal-state partnership to make college as universal, accessible, and affordable as high school has been in the U.S. for more than a century. This bold restructuring of postsecondary educational opportunities creates a successful Promise pathway to increase America’s talent pipeline and bolster national economic recovery and global competitiveness.

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About College Promise
College Promise is a national, nonpartisan initiative to build broad public support for accessible, affordable, quality College Promise programs across the United States. Through partnerships with community colleges, universities, and leaders from across the nation’s education, business, government, nonprofit, labor, and philanthropy sectors, College Promise supports communities and states to enact proven solutions that enable hardworking students to complete their college degrees or certificates, aligning no-cost tuition strategies with meaningful student supports.¬†

Media Contact: Alexis Masino (267) 505-9610 |

SOURCE College Promise