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Mayor Walsh announces expansion of tuition-free college

December 30, 2016

Boston Public Schools

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With the addition of MassBay, three options are now available for BPS graduates.

Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced that the City of Boston's Tuition-Free Community College Plan, which pays for up to three years of community college for eligible Boston Public School graduates, has expanded its participating schools to include MassBay Community College.

"I'm proud to announce the addition of MassBay to Boston's Tuition-Free Community College Plan. We're committed to increasing access to higher education and providing more pathways to economic stability for all of Boston's students," said Mayor Walsh. "Now, with an increase in location and program options, this plan opens more doors for young people to learn and develop the skills necessary to join Boston's talented workforce."

MassBay Community College is a multi-campus college with a 55-year history of preparing students for transfer to four-year colleges or universities, direct entry into the workforce, and ongoing education.

"MassBay has a long tradition of providing affordable, high-quality pathways to top-notch bachelor degree programs and meaningful careers," said Dr. David Podell, president of MassBay Community College. "We are thrilled to partner with the city to increase college access and expand options for the Boston students who need it most."

The Tuition-Free Community College Plan had previously only enrolled eligible students attending Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) and Roxbury Community College (RCC). The inclusion of MassBay Community College provides plan enrollees with greater choice of both location and academics. MassBay operates campuses in Wellesley, Framingham and Ashland.  MassBay also adds more available programs of study, such as automotive technology, interior design and marketing.

Mayor Walsh announced the launch of the Tuition-Free Community College Plan last spring with the goal of helping more Boston students afford and complete college. In order to assist students in completing college, the plan matches all enrolled students with Success Boston coaches who can help them navigate the challenges of higher education. In its first semester, the Tuition-Free Community College Plan has enrolled 41 students, a number that is expected to rise as the plan's benefits become more widely known.

The Tuition-Free Community College Plan is funded by the Mayor's Office of Workforce Development (OWD) part of the the Boston Planning & Development Agency, and the Neighborhood Jobs Trust, a public charitable trust fed by linkage fees generated by large-scale commercial building projects in the city.

"Providing opportunities for Boston's residents to attend community college tuition-free is a direct benefit of Boston's building boom and strong economy," said Director of the Boston Planning and Development Agency Brian Golden. "We know that there are profound benefits - economic and otherwise -  to the recipients of community college degrees throughout their lives. I am pleased we are able to use funds from the Neighborhood Jobs Trust to make positive investments that will have long lasting impacts in our community."  

To learn more about the Tuition-Free Community College Plan, or to apply, please visit: