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September 27, 2018

Six South Jersey community colleges to participate in free college program

The program will go into effect in spring 2019 for qualifying students

Education Colleges
Cumberland County College Screenshot/Google Street View

A view of an entrance to Cumberland County College.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced Thursday six South Jersey community colleges are among 13 institutions named as members of the state’s pilot program to provide free college education for qualifying families.

Atlantic Cape Community College, Cumberland County College, Rowan College at Gloucester County, Salem Community College, Camden County College, and Ocean County College were among the 13 community colleges awarded grants through the program. 

All 19 community colleges in the state applied for the program; each college will receive a $250,000 grant for student outreach, recruitment, and support, regardless of their approval for the pilot program.

“Today we are putting the dream of higher education within reach of more students and more families,” Murphy said in a statement. “Making community college tuition free will help New Jersey’s young people and working adults earn post-secondary degrees to advance their careers – and it will help build the talented workforce that is the engine of our state’s economy."

Murphy estimates the program will serve roughly 13,000 students in 2019.

Starting this coming spring, qualifying students will be able to attend the following schools “tuition- and fee-free”, according to the release from Murphy:

• Atlantic Cape Community College
• Bergen Community College
• Camden County College
• Cumberland County College
• Hudson County Community College
• Mercer County Community College
• Middlesex County College
• Ocean County College
• Passaic County Community College
• Rowan College at Gloucester County
• Salem Community College
• Union County College
• Warren County Community College

Families with adjusted gross incomes below $45,000 will be eligible for money from the grants, and students will eligible if they are taking at least six credits per semester by spring 2019.

Current students who have already completed a financial aid application for the fall 2018 semester will be automatically considered for eligibility. Students at the eligible schools will have until Feb. 15, 2019, to apply by completing the FAFSA and supplemental New Jersey questions, or the Alternative Application for New Jersey Dreamers.

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