Free tuition at Rutgers-NB? New program will make it a reality for thousands

Scarlet Guarantee program means those with family incomes of $65,000 or lower can attend for free

Officials at Rutgers–New Brunswick announced Monday a sweeping new financial aid program that will enable New Jersey students with family incomes below $65,000 to attend the university – tuition free.

The program also provides a sliding scale that significantly limits the amount of out-of-pocket tuition and fees paid by students with family incomes below $100,000.

The Scarlet Guarantee program will be available to first- and second-year students and is linked to the Garden State Guarantee, a new statewide program launched last month by Gov. Phil Murphy that assists third- and fourth-year students.

Rutgers officials estimate that 7,600 students will be able to take advantage of the programs.

Chancellor-Provost Francine Conway said the announcement is a pivotal moment for the state.

“These new programs are transformational for our state’s students,” she said. “Students who once thought a college education could never be within reach will have the access and opportunity to fulfill their life’s ambition. I couldn’t be more thrilled that Rutgers-New Brunswick will now be more inclusive of all students.”

In combination with the Garden State Guarantee, the Scarlet Guarantee will provide the following coverage for undergraduate students for four years:

· Adjusted Gross Income of $65,000 or less: Full annual tuition and mandatory fees

· Adjusted Gross Income of $65,001 to $80,000: Students will pay no more than $3,000 per year toward tuition and mandatory fees

· Adjusted Gross Income of $80,001 to $100,000: Students will pay no more than $5,000 per year toward tuition and mandatory fees

The program provides “last dollar” financial aid that covers the gap in the cost of in-state tuition and mandatory fees after other state and federal aid programs are provided to qualified students.

Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway. ­— File photo

Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway was thrilled to make the announcement.

“The Scarlet Guarantee program will help qualified students from across New Jersey realize their hopes, dreams and ambitions and will help Rutgers become an even richer and more diverse university,” he said.

Students are automatically considered for the Scarlet Guarantee when they complete the FAFSA financial aid form or, if they qualify as a New Jersey Dreamer.

The Garden State Guarantee will be first implemented in the 2022-23 academic year.

“A Rutgers degree will open so many doors, and many more students can now pursue all the opportunities afforded by a world-class research university without worrying about whether they can afford it,” Courtney McAnuff, vice chancellor for enrollment management at Rutgers–New Brunswick, said. “We are deeply appreciative of Gov. Murphy’s commitment to making college more affordable and are happy to join his efforts.”