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Colorado Mountain College today announced the creation of an income-share agreement fund aimed at undocumented students and others who are not eligible to receive federal financial aid, including Dreamers, or students who are eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
The public, four-year institution will allow qualifying students to pay no up-front tuition in exchange for a fixed percentage of their income after graduation, for a fixed period of time. Income-share agreements, or ISAs, are being offered by a small but growing number of institutions, including Purdue University. Colorado Mountain College said its goal is to create a financial aid option for a group with limited or no other options, and to create an affordable repayment method.
The new fund to support the college's ISAs is called Fund Sueños (the Dream Fund). Private donors to the college's foundation will provide initial support, with repayments from graduates replenishing it over time.
“Our educational and social mission extends to all Coloradans,” Carrie Hauser, Colorado Mountain College's president, said in a written statement. “Fund Sueños is designed to break down persistent financial barriers for DREAMers and other students to ensure we are inclusive and accessible to everyone, modeling the democratic promise of higher education.”
The announcement drew praise from John Hickenlooper, Colorado's Democratic governor.
"DREAMers deserve the opportunity to pursue an education," Hickenlooper said in a written statement. "These students need champions like the leaders at Colorado Mountain College and its donors who continue to stitch a safety net in the absence of comprehensive immigration reform."