Alamo Colleges Free Tuition Program Aims To Make Higher Education Affordable, Accessible | Texas Public Radio

Alamo Colleges Free Tuition Program Aims To Make Higher Education Affordable, Accessible

Jul 18, 2019

Seniors graduating in 2020 from select high schools in the San Antonio area will be the first students eligible to take advantage of a free college tuition program called Alamo Promise.



The Alamo Colleges District's program aims to make education more accessible and affordable for local students. Only 45 percent of high school seniors in San Antonio attend college and only 33 percent will go on to get a degree.

Cost is a major barrier when it comes to higher education. Students commonly leave college owing thousands of dollars. The current collective amount of student debt has reached $1.6 trillion.

Phase 1 of Alamo Promise will begin with 25 high schools this fall and eventually the program will be expanded to include all area high schools.

Recipients must first apply for financial aid and the remaining balance will be funded through public and private contributions. The complete funding structure is still being planned out.

What are the full eligibility requirements? How will this program be funded? Is the Alamo Promise a sustainable endeavor?

While the program covers tuition, what other costs and fees will students be responsible for?

Will the Alamo Promise achieve its goals of addressing the area's workforce needs and having a meaninful financial impact on the prosperity of families across San Antonio?

Guest: Robert McKinley, vice chancellor for economic and workforce development at Alamo Colleges

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*This interview was recorded on Thursday, July 18 .