Good news! Stanford has announced that, in an continual effort to make college more affordable, students from families with an annual income of less than $125,000 will no longer have to pay tuition! Additionally, Student’s from families making less than $65,000 will not have to pay room and board.
Stanford’s decision is part of a growing trend among big-ticket schools, increasing the amount and cut-off limit of need-based financial aid. According to a statement from Stanford provost John Etchemendy, “Our highest priority is that Stanford remain affordable and accessible to the most talented students, regardless of their financial circumstances.”
While this is exciting news for Stanford applicants, it should be noted that several equally competitive schools have been putting similar policies in place with comparable limits. Harvard and Yale, for example, do not expect contributions from families making less than and annual $65,000. At Princeton, students whose families make less than $140,000 a year are given free tuition, and room and board is covered for students from families making less than $60,000.
Hopefully this trend among top-tier universities will encourage other expensive schools to follow suit. According to US News & World Report, in 2013 average student debt began approaching $30,000, with 70% of graduates leaving school with an average debt of $28,400.