A huge breakthrough for free education just happened, and it's all starting in Boston.
Too often, high-school students don't attend university or college due to lack of funds. Or if they do attend, they are saddled with debt for years to come.
This lack of post-secondary education makes it harder for them to find well-paying and stable jobs in the future, which in turn can lead to higher depression rates.
Students who do get education are leaving sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt, making it hard to start off any life they may want to live.
University tuition costs have risen 40% over the past decade with no end in sight.
That's why Boston Gov. Charlie Baker and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh announced a tuition-free college program.
The Boston Bridge Program will enable students from low-income families to complete four-year degrees without paying tuition or mandatory fees. The commonwealth and the city will cover all the costs.
Mayor Walsh says this puts "a free bachelor's degree within reach" for low-income students, who otherwise would not have been able to attend post-secondary education.
To qualify for the tuition-free program, eligible students must meet federal Pell grant income standards and enroll full time at Bunker Hill Community College, Roxbury Community College or Mass Bay Community College. The students will be required to complete their associates’ degrees within two and a half years before transferring to state public colleges or state universities.
State Higher Education Commission Carlos Santiago is 100% on board with the program.
"Our message to students is clear — if you commit the time and do the work, we'll be beside you every step of the way to help you complete your college journey while avoiding burdensome debt," he said in a statement.
As someone who graduated $50,000 in student debt, this is something I am totally on board with. How about you?