In-state students from families earning less than $80K will be able to attend U.Va. tuition-free, Ryan announces

In his inaugural address, University President Jim Ryan said students from low- and medium-income Virginia families will be able to attend U.Va. at significantly-reduced costs

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During his inaugural address Friday afternoon, University President Jim Ryan announced that low- and middle-income students will be able to attend U.Va. tuition-free. Andrew Walsh | Cavalier Daily

In-state students from low- and medium-income families will be able to attend U.Va. at significantly-reduced costs, University President Jim Ryan announced in his inaugural address Friday afternoon. 

Students from Virginia families earning less than $80,000 a year and have “typical assets” will be able to attend U.Va. tuition-free, Ryan told the crowd. Students whose families earn less than $30,000 a year with typical assets will be eligible for free room and board on top of the free tuition.

“I see a community that opens wide the door to opportunity for first-generation, low- and middle-income students,” Ryan said while outlining the policy. “There is more work to be done in this space, but we might as well get started.” 

U.Va. has said it meets 100 percent of students’ demonstrated financial need, although financial aid packages can include work-study and need-based loans in addition to scholarships and grants.

“While current UVA financial aid essentially meets this commitment, we believe it’s important to make an explicit promise that this is what we are going to do going forward as part of UVA's commitment to Virginia's low- and middle-income families,” University Spokesperson Anthony de Bruyn told The Cavalier Daily in an email Friday. 

De Bruyn said the announced policy would apply to all current students, but focuses on members of the incoming Fall 2019 class. He added that if any current student feels they qualify for free tuition or room and board but isn’t getting adequate financial support, the financial aid office can review their information on a case-by-case basis.

On Friday, Ryan was sworn in as the University’s ninth president. 

This is a developing story. It has been updated with more information about the announced policy based on a statement from University Spokesperson Anthony de Bruyn.

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