NYU announces it will provide free tuition to “special cohort” of displaced Puerto Rican Students

On Thursday, NYU announced that it would admit a “special cohort” of displaced Puerto Rican college students for the Spring 2018 term, with tuition, housing in a dorm, a meal plan, and health insurance all covered by the university in full.

Earlier this month, NYU Local questioned why NYU had remained silent on providing tuition relief to displaced students while other private universities such as Brown, Cornell, Tulane, and Wesleyan were providing a tuition-free semester. The university did not offer specifics at that time.

In a statement, NYU President Andrew Hamilton took pride in helping those in need.

“New York City has a deep relationship with Puerto Rico, and so does NYU,” Hamilton said. “Through our Faculty Resource Network, we have worked closely with Puerto Rican universities for many years, and feel a strong sense of connection to the higher education community there. We are pleased to make it possible for at least some of Puerto Rico’s college students to be able to carry on their studies here while their home institutions recover. We look forward to welcoming them to our campus in the spring.”

At present, NYU is intending to admit 50 students into the program, but is “prepared to expand the program as capacity allows.”

But the free semester will not exactly be free for the admitted students. Tuition free admittance is conditional on students paying for their spring term at their university in Puerto Rico.

However, tuition at Puerto Rican universities is far lower than tuition is at NYU. In-state tuition at the University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras, the largest campus in the University of Puerto Rico system, was $1,878 for the 2016–17 academic year; out-of-state tuition was $4,456.

The university will not cover transportation to and from New York, nor will it cover the cost of textbooks or other living expenses.

Applications for the program are open through December 15 here.

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