SEO Headline (Max 60 characters)

Free 2-Year College Proposal in Va.

December 13, 2019

Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia, a Democrat, on Thursday unveiled a budget proposal for $145 million over two years to make community college tuition free for low- and middle-income students who pursue jobs in high-demand fields.

Under the plan, eligible students would receive state support to cover tuition, fees and books. The state also would provide "wraparound financial assistance" to help students at the lowest income levels with expenses for food, transportation and childcare.

Targeted industries for the grant program will include health care, information technology, skilled trades, public safety and early childhood education.

To remain eligible, students would need to sign a community engagement agreement and complete two hours of work experience, community service or public service for every enrolled credit hour.

“This large investment will help tens of thousands of Virginians earn the skills needed to fully participate in our 21st-century economy,” Glenn Dubois, chancellor of the Virginia Community College System, said in a statement. “With the redesign of our workforce programs, we are ready to make sure all Virginians can get the right skills for the jobs of today and tomorrow.”

Share Article

Paul Fain

Paul Fain, Contributing Editor, came to Inside Higher Ed in September 2011, after a six-year stint covering leadership and finance for The Chronicle of Higher Education. Paul has also worked in higher ed P.R., with Widmeyer Communications, but couldn't stay away from reporting. A former staff writer for C-VILLE Weekly, a newspaper in Charlottesville, Va., Paul has written for The New York Times, Washington City Paper and Mother Jones. He's won a few journalism awards, including one for beat reporting from the Education Writers Association and the Dick Schaap Excellence in Sports Journalism Award. Paul got hooked on journalism while working too many hours at The Review, the student newspaper at the University of Delaware, where he earned a degree in political science in 1996. A native of Dayton, Ohio, and a long-suffering fan of the Cincinnati Bengals, Fain plays guitar in a band with more possible names than polished songs.

Back to Top