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West Virginia Makes their Public Community Colleges Tuition Free for In-State Residents

The Mountain State is helping out its youth and their futures.

Duane Paul Murphy

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On Monday, March 25th, West Virginia Governor Jim Justice signed a bill into law that would make all public community and technical colleges throughout the state tuition-free as well as affordable for qualified in-state residents. The new law bill permits tuition grants publically funded by the state towards in-state legal U.S. residents who are at least the age of 18 years old, have lived in West Virginia for at least one year immediately preceding the date they apply for, and have completed an accreditated secondary educational program.

These grantees would have to pass a mandatory drug test each semester, maintain a 2.0 grade-point average or above, take at least six credit hours per semester, and must do at least eight hours of community service. Also, graduates must reside in West Virginia for at least two years after getting a certification or degree from a public community college or technical college. The new law goes into effect on June 5th, 2019. 

Nationwide, 17 states offer similar programs to make statewide public higher education tuition-free and affordable for their in-state residents including Tennessee and New York. Countries such as Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Czechia, and Finland offer tuition free public higher education.

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Duane Paul Murphy is a D.C. college student and student journalist born and raised in Southern California. Currently studying for his bachelor’s in politics and a minor in media studies, Duane Paul is interested in covering domestic as well as international political affairs that impact the lives of everyday people, whether they are young students, professionals, or faculty in higher education.

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