City students can apply to top university for free

University of Chicago offering financial help to all Chicago students as part of new program

October 30, 2012

Judith Ruiz-Branch

Students in Chicago can now apply to one of the city’s top universities for free.

The University of Chicago said this is a part of a new program they’re calling, “UChicago Promise.” Under the program, university officials would waive the application fee for Chicago students. The students who are accepted, and aren’t fully covered by financial aid, would receive grants from the university. Spokesperson for the University of Chicago, Steve Kloehn, said students in the program wouldn’t have to apply for student loans.

“We hope that that will allow more students to consider where they’re going to get the best education and not be deterred ahead of time by the prospects of student debt,” Kloehn said.

The University received 25,277 applications in 2012 and admitted 3,344 students. The class of 2012 had 1,525 students. Kloehn said, of those admitted, about 50 from Chicago enroll every year.

But Kloehn said the “UChicago Promise” program is not a way to get more students enrolled at the University of Chicago. He said the program is actually an umbrella for a number of other initiatives geared toward helping city students with the overall college application process.

“I think “UChicago Promise” is an unusual mixture of different kinds of programming, meant to address a series of different obstacles that students from the city of Chicago might face as they consider college,” he said.

Kloehn said the ultimate goal of the new program is to make sure more students find the college that is best for them, even if it’s not the University of Chicago.