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Brown University hits a new milestone with the elimination of student loans

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Undergraduate students at Brown University should be jumping up and down.

A new scholarship fund plan is being instituted and you won't have to pay it back, they will replace loans with financial aid awards.

This announcement by the Providence-based Ivy league comes this week, when the school concluded a three-month long financial campaign.

The campaign, The Brown Promise: The Future of Financial Aid at Brown, launched on September 20th, culminated with $30 million raised by 2,087 donors. In an official statement released by the university, there are plans for the posterity of the school’s financial initiative “to raise an additional $90 million to ensure the sustainability of the financial aid initiative” for a total of $120 million.

This fundraising effort, however, is only part of a larger $500 million goal beginning in 2015 “for undergraduate financial aid set in 2015 as part of the $3 billion BrownTogether campaign.”

Philanthropy isn’t such a novel thing at Brown, recalls Alumnus Tevin Jackson, class of 2014, who worked with the Brown Annual Fund while an undergrad. “Fundraising wasn’t always easy when I was still a student. But I think for today’s context of growing student debt, it becomes more of an imperative that Brown addresses this in smaller ways.”

All returning and incoming students can expect this big change in their financial aid awards in the fall of 2018, a change that builds “on need-blind admissions and other initiatives to make a Brown education more accessible.” At Brown, at a time when the school’s tuition fees are estimated at $67,439, the scholarship funds will not need to be repaid by students.

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And this new policy will address the needs of not only domestic but also international students.

“This initiative takes financial aid at the University to the next level, helping us do more for moderate-income students and families. It amplifies our commitment to bringing the best and brightest students to Brown regardless of their socioeconomic background.”
Christina Paxson, Brown University President

“We have seen an outpouring of generosity from alumni across the generations — from the 1950s to the 2010s — as well as current members of the Brown senior class, and parents and friends of the University, all stepping up to strengthen the future of financial aid at Brown.”

For alumnus Eric Handy, class of 2016, giving to the campaign is part of collective Brown community. “Even after graduating, I felt a commitment to making Brown a place accessible to all students, regardless of their class backgrounds. There is never a shortage of talent and I, and my former classmates, are committed to that change.”

Quite unlike any other school, “Brown is doing good work.”

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Brown University's benchmark is $500 million and they will likely achieve that quickly with the help of alumni.

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