Dartmouth College, an Ivy League university in New Hampshire, said Monday it would no longer offer loans in its undergraduate financial aid programs and would instead replace them with more scholarships.
The policy will come into effect on June 23, so students entering the 2022 summer semester will be the first beneficiaries.
“Thanks to this extraordinary investment from our community, students can prepare for lives of impact with fewer constraints,” said Dartmouth College President Philip Hanlon. “Eliminating loans from financial aid programs will allow Dartmouth undergraduates to pursue their purpose and passion in the widest possible range of career opportunities.”
Dartmouth currently has a policy that does not require loans for students with household incomes below $125,000, but it will now extend to students with household incomes above $125,000 and receive assistance funding as needed.
The school estimates the move will eliminate up to $5,500 in student debt per student per year.
The decision is backed by $80 million from about 65 donors, Dartmouth said.
“Dartmouth already offers generous aid to students from low-income backgrounds, and this shift to a universal no-loan policy will help middle-income families who often have to stretch their budgets to meet the cost of higher education.” , said the director of financial aid. Dino Koff said in a press release.
The policy is part of Dartmouth’s The Call to Lead campaign, which “is a bold invitation to Dartmouth’s global community to engage with the big issues of this century and the next,” according to its website.
As part of the campaign, the school also offered blind admissions to international students and increased the household income limit for full scholarships to $125,000. Blind admissions are decisions that do not take into account the applicant’s financial situation.
President Joe Biden has suspended repayment and interest on federal student loans since the pandemic began in March 2020.
Student loan forgiveness was one of Biden’s main campaign platforms in the 2020 presidential election, in which he pledged to forgive at least $10,000 in student debt per person. He is expected to make an announcement soon on what he plans to do next about the issue.
Additionally, we should cancel a minimum of $10,000/person in federal student loans, as proposed by Senator Warren and his colleagues. Young people and other students in debt have borne the brunt of the latest crisis. This shouldn’t happen again.
—Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) March 22, 2020
A recent NPR/Ipsos poll showed that 55% of Americans support Biden canceling up to $10,000 per person.
But the more the relief is generous, the more this support shrinks.
Forty-seven percent of all respondents said they supported writing off debt of up to $50,000, while 41% expressed support for completely wiping the slate clean for all borrowers.