Cuomo’s free tuition program comes with a major catch


Andrew Cuomo

Everything free comes with a price.

From NY Post: Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s much-heralded new program for free tuition at state colleges comes with a huge catch: You have to sign years of your life away to get it.

Under a provision that was added to the tuition bill at the last moment, students who get a free ride at CUNY and SUNY schools must live and work in New York state for up to four years after graduation, or be forced to pay the money back.

The amendment — which was not part of Cuomo’s original offer of free college for middle-class students — was added at the insistence of Republicans in the state Senate.

The GOP members worried that taxpayer-educated students would take their valuable knowledge and flee to other parts of the US, particularly from remote upstate communities.

“New York spends $1 billion on college financial assistance. There is a brain-drain problem,” said Senate GOP spokesman Scott Reif. “We have to get away from educating people and then having them move away. We want to create a climate for business and new jobs.”

Cuomo agreed with the change. “Why should New Yorkers pay for your college education and then you pick up and you move to California?” Cuomo said during a call with state editorial writers.

The concept of investing in you and your education is that you’re going to stay here and be an asset to the state. If you don’t want to stay here, then go to California now, let them pay for your college education.”

But one professor of higher education slammed the proposal as “economically and educationally foolish.”

“As someone who has worked on almost every free college bill, I promise@NYGovCuomo won’t be remembered well if he keeps this provision,” Temple University Professor Sara Goldrick-Rab tweeted. She noted that Tennessee offers free tuition at its community colleges “without this nonsense.”

Cuomo’s Excelsior Scholarship provides free in-state tuition for students from families with adjusted gross incomes of $125,000 or less. It is the first program of its kind in the country to fully subsidize tuition at both four-year and community colleges. Students must maintain a minimum grade-point average to qualify.

Cuomo is expected to tout the program at a bill-signing ceremony Wednesday at La Guardia Community College in Queens.

Lawmakers also approved a new tuition assistance program for students at private colleges that offers up to $3,000 in tuition grants. That assistance, too, comes with a requirement that a student remain in New York after graduation.

Students who receive free tuition and then leave the state for an advanced degree won’t have to pay the money back, assuming they return to New York once they complete their graduate studies. State officials also plan to make accommodations for graduates who leave the state for military service.


15 responses to “Cuomo’s free tuition program comes with a major catch

  1. Good for New York State Senate’s Republicans! The “free tuition” will be paid by NY taxpayers, so it’s only fair that those who take advantage of this freebie commit themselves to stay in the state for at least 4 years, presumably while gainfully employed and paying taxes.

    Liked by 1 person

    • HAHA! Can you imagine if they become unemployed? How long do they have until the debt is put on them? Who keeps track of all these people? Sounds like an excuse for creation of another tax-payer funded bureau to give away tax-payer money….create a problem to solve a problem,

      Liked by 2 people

  2. The bill is illegal and unconstitutional: How is New York going to monitor the whereabouts of its graduates so funded? What if some of them have their employers located in New York State, and then those employers move out of state? The permutations are endless….
    Also, why stop at an adjusted gross income of $125,000? Suppose there are eight people in the family? The net income of this number could very well be half of the gross. The number is too low, and does not help the middle class.

    Politicians once again prove how IRRELEVANT they are, and how BACKWARDS their solutions are: This bill does NOTHING to those currently paying back enormous student loans. Sigh….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Steven . . . I am glad you addressed the situation of current students struggling under the weight of huge debt . . . “This bill does NOTHING to those currently paying back enormous student loans . . .” I suppose they will have to set up some Gestapo office to monitor where the students are. As far as I know, you cannot always guarantee that a job that suits your qualifications is going to be “exactly here” or “there” or in New York State.

      It is rather nice when we get the whole skinny, and the other shoe has dropped.

      I do agree that the taxpayers should get something back for investing in these young people. This is just a quandary to me.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s a scam. Other costs such as dormitory housing will be raised to offset
    any savings to the students and prevent any loss of revenue for the colleges. This trick has been thoroughly documented on Professor Doom’s blog. College administrators are paid extravagant salaries proportional to
    enrollment. Most professors are non-tenure track and are so poorly
    they are eligible for food stamps. Only about 1% of community college
    students earn a degree. They are entertained by sex courses,
    gyms, rock climbing, etc. to keep them borrowing money until
    student aid runs out. Bankers and administrators get rich at the
    expense of the taxpayers and students, most of whom become
    deeply in student loan debt, which cannot be bankrupted.


  4. Critics of the program lack proper instruction and experience in the realities of basic economics. Every day is Christmas for all, no work, all presents forever! Put it on the petrocard (plastic is made from petroleum, after all), and, with luck, we will die comfortably of old age and in our sleep before the bill comes due. That will be our children’s problem, we don’t have to think about that, we can bury our heads in MSM and popular entertainment. (Sarc., but, you know, I’m getting to like this!) (Okay, Sarc.)


  5. Times may change but you still get what you pay for. Soon the diploma will only be worth the cost of the paper and ink.

    Liked by 2 people

    • YouKnowWho . . . you have a very valid point. Here in Portland, OR we had a huge amount of young African America women who wanted to go to school to become hair stylists. So they borrowed money, went to school . . . many did not complete the courses, or they F-A-I-L-E-D to pass sufficient courses to become certified. So they many had a baby, got on welfare, thus the monies that were spent on “their education” came to naught! Those who really want to become educated will do so, many other’s will try to live the high life on someone else’s dime . . . and thus it goes!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. I do not blame the Governor nor the other politicians that added this provision to the bill. Look at foreign governments that pay for the educations of their citizens that school here in the USA. The graduates then decide it is more lucrative to stay here in the USA instead of returning to their own country to apply their education there. That country not only loses the money that it paid to educate their citizens but lose the doctors, engineers etc to the USA. There are plans like that here in Georgia for Doctors and Teachers and Police Officers . If you do not practice here in Georgia as you promised and where you promised you MUST repay the tuition cost. It is only right and fair.

    Liked by 1 person

    • A sound idea if under the right circumstances. At one time, we had that; that was before our general manufacturing base was shipped overseas by those working at destroying our country so that they could gain control of all humanity. Our country is being flooded with unemployables in a nation with lacking employment opportunities. And many going to college would do much better in a trade making use of voke schools and apprenticeships. Unfortunately, those imposing a NWO want serfdom, dictatorship, depopulation, and a great increase in increasingly useful robotics.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Think trained blue collar jobs. Electricians,plumbers, painters, dry wall, auto body etc. soon, these jobs will be worth gazillions and you will be able to,set your price. These other jobs and all those workers brought in to work here also, makes the value decrease and the market can only maintain so many.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. While Gov. Andrew Cuomo was taking a victory lap on Wednesday for the passage of his free tuition plan for public colleges in New York, Assemblyman James Skoufis has introduced a bill that would repeal a post-graduate in-state work requirement.

    Source –

    Skoufis Wants To Repeal Work Requirement In Tuition Plan

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What they need to do if this is to work is make the “agreement” a carved-in-stone CONTRACT with the NY State Government.That way if someone bails before their 4 years are up,a warrant can be issued,a nationwide person hunt can ensue,and arrest and prosecution can be brought to bear. They’d be on the same “platform” as Illegal Aliens–oh wait-,uh,never mind….

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Did people think the state will just give anyone something free without getting something back in return. Hey, for the New Yorker it is a great deal cause they are not leaving the state anyway. For out of town Johnny come lately looks like they have
    to stay a while

    Liked by 1 person

    • Another requirement to put a stop to those Johnny Come Lately. You or your parents must be RESIDENTS of the state for at least 4 years before you qualify. If there isn’t some residency requirements, people from all over the world would live there just long enough to graduate and then split. If you or your parents lived there 4 or more years before you could apply then good chance one of you had been paying some taxes into the state!

      Liked by 2 people

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