Brown seeks to convert student loans to student grants

BROWN UNIVERSITY ANNOUCNED A PROGRAM that will convert its financial aid to student from loans to grants. / COURTESY BROWN UNIVERSITY
BROWN UNIVERSITY ANNOUCNED A PROGRAM that will convert its financial aid to student from loans to grants. / COURTESY BROWN UNIVERSITY

PROVIDENCE – Brown University announced that it has begun a campaign to eliminate loans from the university’s financial aid packages, with the goal of offering students who require financial aid grants that will not need to be repaid.

The initiative, “The Brown Promise: The Future of Financial Aid at Brown,” will require an additional $4.5 million each year of the school’s financial aid budget, which is expected to come from $100 million in endowed funds and $20 million of current-use funds.

The university said in a release Wednesday that it will have to raise $30 million prior to implementing the initiative (hopefully by December 2017), in order to implement the program by the 2018-19 academic year.

“We’re committed to making a Brown education accessible to students from all income groups, so we can continue to accept the very best and brightest students from around the world,” Brown President Christina H. Paxson said. “When students and their families are sitting at their dining room tables making decisions about where to apply to college, or whether to accept an offer of admission, we want them to know that Brown is an affordable choice.”

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All students, both domestic and international, who receive financial aid will be affected by the policy, the school said in a release.

The financial aid loan elimination is part of the $3 billion BrownTogether fundraising campaign announced in 2015. The Brown Promise is specifically part of the overall $500 million from the BrownTogether campaign purposed for undergraduate financial aid. The release notes that the initiative was the next step from a 2003 implementation of need-blind admissions.

Chris Bergenheim is the PBN web editor.

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