Yale partners with ‘Say Yes to Education’

As part of its effort to make a Yale education accessible to all, the university is partnering with Say Yes to Education, the national non-profit group that helps organize and galvanize entire cities around the goals of making higher education accessible and affordable for the children in their communities.

The organization announced Dec. 6 that seven colleges and universities had joined the effort as new partners, bringing the total number of private college and university partners to 61.

Dean of Admissions Jeremiah Quinlan says, “Yale is proud to partner with Say Yes to Education. For 50 years, Yale’s financial aid policies have ensured that costs are never a barrier for students who gain admission to Yale. The partnership with Say Yes will help college-bound students see that a Yale education is financially accessible, and will aid incoming students as they navigate the transition to college. We share Say Yes’s commitment to making higher education accessibility and affordable to all students.”   

In joining the Say Yes Higher Education Compact, Yale has agreed to cover all tuition and fees for admitted students served by the organization whose annual family income is at or below $75,000. Yale’s financial aid policies ensure that parents earning $65,000 or less, with typical assets, are not asked to make any monetary contribution to the cost of their child’s Yale education, including tuition, room, meals, and books. 

Yale has designed one of America’s most generous need-based financial aid programs. The average annual grant from Yale to students receiving financial aid is approximately $40,000, or about two-thirds of the cost of attendance. Over the last 10 years, the percentage of undergraduate students qualifying for need-based financial aid from Yale has risen from 37% to 57%.

Kiplinger Finance recently ranked Yale the “#1 best value among private colleges” for the second consecutive year. To make prospective students aware of Yale’s generous aid policies, the university engages in extensive outreach to high-achieving students from low-income families. Recently a group of Yale students discussed what Yale’s transformative financial aid has meant for them and their families.

Say Yes’ tuition benefits and other supports (which may include tutoring, after-school services, counseling, and even legal assistance) are available to the families of nearly 65,000 students in pre-kindergarten through grade 12 in every public school in Buffalo and Syracuse, New York. The organization expects to expand to additional cities in the coming years. The first students eligible to apply to Yale under the new partnership agreements are those seeking to enroll in college in Fall 2014.

More than 3,000 high school graduates have gone off to college with Say Yes supports since its inception. In Syracuse and Buffalo, Say Yes works in partnership with local elected officials, business leaders, community-based organizations and local universities — as well as students, parents, school administrators, teachers and counselors.

Yale is an active partner with several national college access organizations, including QuestBridge, College Summit, College Horizons, and the National Partnership for Educational Access.