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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Many Low Income Student Can't Afford College Application Fees -- So Some Colleges Are Doing This!

College students registering

Recent studies show that up to 25 percent of high academic students from low income families don't apply for college. Why? Many say it's because they can't afford the application fees, which can run from $30 to $90 per school. Students who can afford to do so usually apply to several colleges to increase their chances of being accepted, but students from poor families either don't apply at all or are limited to applying to just one college.
So what's the solution?

To help this situation, many colleges are now dropping the application fees for qualifying low-income students. For example, Bowdoin College and Trinity College of Connecticut, and the City University of New York all have application fees of $65. If a student applied to all three, they would have to pay close to $200 in application fees. So, these 3 colleges have recently decided to waive the application fee to poor students who qualify.

Who is eligible?

The qualifications to waive the application fee are similar at all 3 colleges.

City University of New York - no application fee for high school students who are eligible for the federal free or reduced-price lunch program or receive public assistance, students living in federally subsidized public housing or a foster home, and homeless students.

* Bowdoin College - no application fee for students who are the first in their family to go to college, and for students who are applying for financial aid.

* Trinity College - no application fee for students who are the first generation in their family to go to college.

So, does it really work?

The question is, will dropping application fees encourage more low-income students to apply to colleges? Studies have indicated it does work. When Reed College in Portland, Oregon, dropped all of its application fees, applications increased up to 40 percent. Other research, such as the one conducted by Caroline Hoxby of Stanford University and Sarah Turner of the University of Virginia, found that when high achieving, low-income students were offered application fee waivers, they were far more likely to apply to more colleges, and even more competitive colleges.

Perhaps more colleges will join in on dropping application fees to attract more high-academic, low-income students. After all, they have earned it!

Read more at www.insidehighered.com/news/2016/09/28/more-colleges-drop-application-fees-low-income-students
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