Yale Announces Lowest Increase for Tuition, Room and Board in 30 Years (Lowest in the Ivies in Two Decades)

Financial Aid Expanded to Assist Undergraduate Students

New Haven, Conn. – President Richard C. Levin of Yale University today announced that undergraduate tuition and room and board – the “term bill” – will increase 2.9 percent in 1998-99, the lowest percentage increase in 30 years. It will mark the sixth straight year that the percentage increase in the term bill will decline, and it represents the lowest percentage increase of any Ivy League institution in at least two decades.

At the same time, Levin announced four financial aid initiatives. The initiatives include a new family savings and home equity allowance that will protect up to $150,000 of savings, home equity and other assets from consideration in determining what parents are expected to contribute to their child’s college education. The allowance will be effective for all four undergraduate classes – not just incoming freshmen – in the 1998-99 academic year.

“In limiting again the term bill increase and in introducing the financial aid initiatives, Yale is reinforcing its long-standing commitment to attract to Yale College the most outstanding students in the nation and to meet the full financial need of all those who are admitted,” Levin said.

Dean of Undergraduate Admissions and Financial Aid Richard Shaw explained, “We are introducing an allowance in which $150,000 of a family’s financial assets – whether in the form of home equity or savings or stocks or any combination of other investments – will not be taken into account in determining the expected parental contribution to the cost of college. By instituting a broad allowance, rather than protecting a single asset such as home equity, Yale ensures that families will not be penalized for their savings and investment decisions or feel pressured to alter their savings strategies to increase a child’s financial award from Yale.” Shaw noted this substantial increase in the level of protected assets will reduce the contributions expected from approximately half of the parents of aided students, although applying federal aid guidelines will limit these reductions in some cases.

Levin said, “We continue to believe that parents and students should contribute to the cost of a college education and that higher education is an important investment, yielding lifelong returns. But by protecting all types of savings and not simply the traditionally-favored home equity, we are recognizing the need of families to save for purposes in addition to their children’s education, such as supporting aged parents and self-insuring against contingencies such as disability, illness and unemployment.”

The three other financial aid initiatives will:

– ensure that, in the calculation of financial aid, families receive the full benefit of the recently-enacted federal HOPE Scholarships and the Lifetime Learning tax credits;

– introduce a new program to reduce or waive summer earnings expectations for one summer for upperclass students who pursue low-paying public service internships, University summer travel fellowships or formal study abroad programs; and

– increase by 50% the amount of financial aid for new international students with need but who do not qualify for the aid programs available for U.S. citizens and Canadians.

Yale is one of a small number of colleges and universities nationwide that both admits United States students without regard to their ability to pay for their education, a policy called “need-blind” admissions, and also fully meets the demonstrated financial need of each student.

Last year, 42% of Yale’s undergraduates received need-based financial aid. In total, Yale provided $29 million in University-funded scholarships for undergraduates last year. The average annual scholarship exceeded $13,000, and some students received grants in excess of $25,000. Yale anticipates that approximately half of those on financial aid will benefit from the new family savings and home equity protection allowance, with an extra $1,400 on average being awarded to those students. Under the new allowance, the additional grant from Yale could exceed $6,000.

Yale estimates that the initiatives being announced will add approximately $2 million to the financial aid budget in the 1998-99 academic year, rising to $3 million in 2001-2002.

Levin underscored that Yale remains strongly committed to awarding student financial aid on the basis of need and to meeting the full demonstrated financial need of all students. As a member of the Ivy League, Yale does not award athletic scholarship, or scholarships for any reason other than financial need.

Shaw said that Yale will retain loans as part of the general financial aid package. “By including a part-time job and a long-term loan as part of the financial aid package, students and their parents contribute to the cost of an education that will have lifelong benefits,” Shaw said. “We recognize that some institutions may replace loans with grants in some instances; we will examine such actions on a case-by-case basis.”

The cost of undergraduate tuition and room and board for Yale College in 1998-99 will be $30,830. This fee includes $23,780 for tuition and $7,050 for room and board. Yale College, the undergraduate school of the University, has an enrollment of 5,200 students.

“We are pleased that this will be the sixth straight year that our term bill percentage increase declined and that it is the smallest percentage increase in thirty years,” said Levin, noting that Yale has an excellent record of attracting students from families of all income levels. “Yale is deeply committed to ensuring that the education it offers is available to the nation’s most outstanding students regardless of family income or situation.”

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