Roger Williams U Launches Affordable Excellence Initiative

NEC member seeks to address barriers to education

New England Council member Roger Williams University (RWU), an independent co-educational institution located in Bristol, RI, recently launched a new initiative aimed at making college education more affordable, and therefore more accessible.  The Affordable Excellence Initiative is an effort to address the costs limiting access to higher education, rising student debt, and career readiness.

The University will create “affordable excellence” in four ways. First, RWU will improve its value by encouraging students to major and minor in both liberal arts and professional programs. Second, the university will implement a tuition freeze for students enrolling in the 2013-14 academic year. Third, for all currently enrolled undergraduate day students, tuition will not increase for four years as long as they are continuously enrolled.  Finally, during the current academic year, Dr. Donald J. Farish, President of the University, and board member of the New England Council, hopes to foster a dialogue on college access and affordability within the RWU community and among the public.

In announcing the Initiative, Dr. Farish said, “America has stated very clearly that it requires higher education to be both more effective and more affordable. While our natural inclination may be to go into hibernation and wait for the storm to pass, doing so would only prolong the inevitable – we need sustainable solutions, and we need them quickly.” He said RWU would not be able to solve these problems on its own but, “We can do the right thing by our own students and their families by controlling our costs, limiting debt and ensuring that our graduates have the skills necessary not only to obtain a well-paying job in a bleak economy, but to lead a successful and fulfilling life.”

This new initiative comes after Roger Williams University decided to make SAT/ACT submission optional for admission, and focus more on the student as a whole. Read more about this new initiative in the Providence Business News or on RWU’s website.

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