Yale to Eliminate Financial Burden For Low-Income Families

Yale College will eliminate the financial contribution that low–income parents have to make toward their children’s education, President Richard C. Levin announced today.

Families with incomes below $45,000 will no longer be required to pay any portion of the cost of their children’s education, Levin said, and families with incomes between $45,000 and $60,000 will see their required contribution reduced significantly.

“We want to attract the most promising students from all economic backgrounds to Yale,” Levin said. “These financial aid enhancements will make Yale even more affordable to students in need of aid and underscore Yale’s strong commitment to the broadest access.”

Yale College admits all students without regard to their financial circumstances, a policy called “need–blind” admissions, and meets the full demonstrated financial need of all admitted students. Yale adopted its need–blind principles more than 30 years ago. More than 40% of Yale undergraduates qualify for need–based scholarship grants from Yale. The average grant for 2004–05 from Yale funds is over $22,000 and the top grant is more than $39,000. The new financial aid enhancements announced today will be effective for the 2005–06 academic year and will apply to all returning Yale College students, as well as to the entering class of freshmen.

For those families in the $45,000–$60,000 income range, the largest reductions in the parents’ contribution will go to the families with the lowest incomes, reflecting their greater need for financial aid. Families with higher incomes will receive proportionately smaller reductions in the contribution required of parents. Families in the middle of the income range will see their required contribution reduced by about 50%.

In addition to eliminating or reducing the parents’ contribution for low–income families, Yale College will provide international students on financial aid with funds to pay for one trip home each year. Yale currently meets the cost of one trip home for those students during their four–year undergraduate careers. Several years ago, Yale extended full need–based financial aid benefits to all international students, and the additional funding for visits home will make Yale even more welcoming to international students.

Levin said the changes in financial aid would be coupled with enhanced outreach efforts by Yale to make prospective students and their families aware of Yale’s aid policies.

“We will be expanding significantly our efforts to reach out to students who may believe their family’s financial circumstances rule out the possibility of a Yale education,” Levin said. “We want these students and their guidance counselors at schools around the country to learn what Yale has to offer. This commitment to expand our outreach and recruitment is based on the success of our current efforts, which includes the involvement of current Yale students.”

Today’s announcement follows another announcement earlier this year that Yale will provide undergraduates on financial aid with grant support for Yale–sponsored summer study and internships abroad. The provision of financial aid for summer programs abroad supports Yale’s goal of having all undergraduates have at least one international experience abroad involving study, research or volunteer service.

The annual Yale College financial aid budget is expected to grow to more than $52 million for 2005–06.

In addition to the parents’ contribution, if any, Yale expects all students to contribute to the cost of their education. Yale has in recent years reduced the amount of the students’ expected contribution by more than one–third.