The University of Illinois Urbana campus is hoping a new free tuition program will help boost in-state enrollment. But, officials don’t know how much of a boost the program will provide.
Kevin Pitts is the U of I’s Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education. Pitts says one goal of the Illinois Commitment program is to draw interest from students who haven’t been applying to the U of I because of “sticker shock,” but … “How many new applications will this program generate is something that’s a bit of a mystery to us.” Pitts says the money cannot be used for books or dorm fees, even though U of I requires students to live on campus for at least one year, at a cost of about 11-thousand-dollars. “If the student wins any supplemental scholarship which might be a merit-based scholarship from the university, it might be a scholarship from a third party, that then could be used for room and board and books.” He says the U of I already provides almost $140-million in financial aid. This program will add another $4 million beginning next fall.