Brown will provide full pre-college scholarships to all Providence public school students

PROVIDENCE — Brown University will provide full scholarships for its summer pre-college program to all admitted Providence public school students.

The university announced Thursday that the new scholarships for Providence high schoolers will “eliminate all consideration” of a family’s financial circumstances. The pre-college program offers more than 300 noncredit first-year college-level courses. In some programs, high schoolers will also have the chance to live in residence halls.

Most of the pre-college programs at Brown do not provide formal credits or grades to students but can cost up to $10,000, depending on the course load.

The cost for the pre-college programs varies and is determined by the program and number of courses the student enrolls in. According to the university’s website, summer pre-college programs could start at nearly $3,300 for one week in-person, and increase to nearly $10,000 for a hybrid five-week program.

These costs do not include supplemental, material, or other fees and do not provide students with formal credits or grades.

The cost of a pre-baccalaureate program, a for-credit program where classes are conducted online, can cost nearly $5,000 for one course over seven weeks and nearly $10,000 for two courses over seven weeks.

Since 2016, when a partnership between Brown’s pre-college program and the Providence Public School District formed, approximately 200 students from the city schools have enrolled. In 2022, 38 Providence public school students were enrolled, which represents a fraction of the program’s total enrolled students of more than 7,000 from all 50 states and territories, and more than 70 countries.

Jael Lopes, director of strategic community partnerships for the district, said most students who begin filling out the pre-college application stop at the financial aid portion.

“Some students don’t have that financial information to share, or it’s a barrier for families who don’t make a lot of money or feel safe providing their records,” Lopes said. “We also think about undocumented families not having those documents to present or share.”

Lopes said data shows there’s a financial need for most students and it is a burden to families to ask them to prove their financial need “over and over again.” By providing full scholarships, she said she expects an increase in participation.

Alexa Gagosz can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @alexagagosz and on Instagram @AlexaGagosz.

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