Tennessee Makes Community College Free for Adults

Tennessee Makes Community College Free for Adults

Tennessee Promise, a scholarship program which was established back in 2014, will be expanded in order make community college free for all Tennesseans

The state of Tennessee made history. Tennessee will become the first American state to provide free college education for all of its residents, regardless of income. Thanks to Bill Haslam, the current governor of the state, Tennessee Promise was founded in 2014. However, the program used to only cover recent high school graduates. But last Wednesday, the scholarship program was expanded because of legislation. Tennessee Promise will now cover every single resident who does not already have a college degree. The expanded version of the program will begin next year.

According to Haslam, it is all about preparing people for the workforce. However, Tennesseans must be prepared for the jobs of the future. This is why there has to be a higher access to high-quality education. Haslam that 50 percent of his fellow citizens will be college educated by 2025. Tennessee Promise will cover associate degrees. In order to qualify for the scholarship program, students must have been a resident of Tennessee for at least a year. Students also have to apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and be enrolled in school at least part-time. Pupils must too have a satisfactory GPA.

Haslam is also a Republican, which is why he has attracted the attention of the whole country. The idea of tuition-free college has been debated in American politics for years. It has been widely accepted by the Democrats, but it has been questioned by many Republicans. Other states have made college more accessible. Oregon made two-year colleges free for its recent high school graduates. San Francisco, like Tennessee, will make college free for all of its residents next winter.

New York made two-year colleges and universities free for all of its residents who have an income of less than $125,000 a year. Rode Island might follow the same example. Tennessee Promise will save students around $3,700 a year. Students who receive Pell Grants will also receive help from the program. Basically,the scholarship and mentoring program will cover the remaining costs not covered by the Pell Grant. The expanded new system will also cost about $10 million, and it will be paid by state’s lottery account.

Thanks to Tennessee Promise, many have been able to attend college. According to Haslam, more than 30,000 students have been helped by the scholarship program. Thus, more students are now enrolling in schools.