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Massachusetts Legislators Consider Universal Free Community College

Free community college is part of a $58 billion budget recently approved by the Massachusetts State Senate for Fiscal Year 2025.

Michael J. RodriguesMichael J. Rodrigues“Tuition free Community College impacts individuals most in need and whom otherwise would not be afforded this opportunity,” said Sen. Michael J. Rodrigues, chair of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means. “It will greatly help to keep our workforce graduates stand ready to meet the challenges of a global economy.”

The proposed $117.5 million investment, known as MassEducate, would use revenues collected from the state’s 4% Fair Share surtax on residents with an annual income over $1 million. MassEducate would cover the cost of community college tuition and fees.

The budget also provides $10 million for wraparound supports to boost community college and state university student persistence and $5 million for Early College and Innovation Pathways.

“Today, we shift conversations about college from ‘I wish,’ to ‘I will,’ for thousands of students and families in Massachusetts,” said Sen. President Karen E. Spilka. “We are investing in talent that is right here at home, and opening the workforce floodgates to employers who are starved for graduates, so Massachusetts keeps the competitive edge that we pride ourselves in.”

The Commonwealth’s House of Representatives is set to vote on the proffer before the fiscal year begins in July.

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