New Mexico Now Offers Free College For Both Full And Part-Time Students

One of the things that most people know about college is the fact that it is expensive. Going to college is a decision that takes a lot of consideration because you need to weigh out the expense in comparison to what you are going to do with the rest of your life.

Of course, the fact that college tuition is expensive is nothing new. It has been that way for decades, and the cost continues to rise at an alarming rate.

In order to overcome this, many people will seek out student loans, but they have problems associated with them as well.

Photo: flickr/CollegeDegrees360

Although this continues to be a problem in many areas, it seems as if New Mexico residents are now getting a break. Lawmakers in that state have decided to make tuition free for most people who live within the borders.

What kind of difference can this make in someone’s life? When you consider that tuition and fees for a year of school at many colleges were $9400, it really can make the difference between going and not going.

That doesn’t mean, however, that you won’t have any costs associated with your schooling. When you consider the cost of childcare, food, living expenses, and textbooks, it can add up quickly as well. The fact that you not are paying tuition, however, is a real benefit.

Photo: flickr/Eugene Kim

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham made this historic decision, which passed through both state legislative houses on March 4, 2022. It is known as the New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship Act, and it provides a fund for scholarships of $75 million.

Prior to the new initiative, about 10,000 people could receive a scholarship every year. With the new law in place, however, as many as 35,000 students can receive a scholarship.

Perhaps the best part is that it is relatively inclusive. Almost anybody who lives in New Mexico will be able to qualify, including those who are part-time students, provided you have a minimum of six credit hours and keep your grade point average at 2.5 or greater, you qualify.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

In a statement, the governor said: “A fully funded Opportunity Scholarship opens the door for every New Mexican to reach higher, strengthening our economy, our families and our communities…Signing this legislation sends a clear message to New Mexicans that we believe in them and the contributions they will make for their families and the future of our great state.”

Hopefully other states follow New Mexico’s lead!

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