President Michael Fitts has announced Louisiana Promise, a new initiative that will make a Tulane University undergraduate degree more accessible and affordable for Louisiana residents from low- and middle-income families and increase access to higher education for all students in New Orleans.
Around 11 percent of Tulane’s undergraduate students come from Louisiana — Louisiana Promise will increase that number by opening access to a much wider applicant pool that reflects the diversity of New Orleans and the state.
“Louisiana Promise is a commitment to our state and community to make higher education more accessible,” Fitts said. “If a Louisiana student’s dream is to come to Tulane, we don’t want financial concerns to be a barrier for them to become a part of the Tulane family. These programs will help keep the state’s best and brightest students in Louisiana.”
“Louisiana Promise is a commitment to our state and community to make higher education more accessible."
President Michael Fitts
Fitts emphasized the importance of the new program to both Tulane and New Orleans, whose futures are inextricably linked.
“Tulane would not be the kind of university it is absent its unique location and New Orleans, indeed the entire state of Louisiana, is stronger, more economically vibrant and possess greater potential because of Tulane’s presence,” Fitts said. “Louisiana Promise is part of a continued commitment to our shared destinies.”
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell hailed the new program.
"I want to applaud Tulane University for its launch of the Louisiana Promise program, which will create pathways for Louisiana high school students to attend Tulane. This builds upon their investment that I have the honor of committing to through the Mayoral Scholarship program. It is vital that we expand access to higher education for our young people here in New Orleans and across the state. We embrace every opportunity to support efforts to recruit as diverse a college population as possible in our city."
New programs associated with Louisiana Promise initiative include:
Debt-free Financial Awards
Louisiana Promise Financial Awards will meet full financial need without loans for Louisiana high school graduates who have been admitted to Tulane as fall first-time, full-time freshmen, whose families make less than $100,000 and who meet other program requirements. The program will offer sliding-scale financial aid awards based on an assessment of family income and assets. The program is designed to help qualifying students attend Tulane without having to take out loans. These awards will be available in fall 2020 for next year’s incoming class.
Pre-college Summer Program
Each year, Tulane will provide funding for 50 Louisiana high school students to attend a two-week, residential pre-college summer program. Participating students will be nominated by a school counselor, teacher or community-based organization. This program will provide high school students with the opportunity to experience college life and to explore their intellectual, professional and creative passions.
“Louisiana Promise will include new ways to engage and support first-generation and other students who may have never considered Tulane, or a university like it, as an option,” said Satyajit Dattagupta, vice president for enrollment management and dean of undergraduate admission at Tulane. “Our goal is to reach out to students early in their high school careers and help them prepare for the college selection and application process.”
College Preparatory Center
Tulane will also establish a new college preparatory center on campus designed specifically for New Orleans-area students. Open to those beginning their freshman year of high school, the center will assist aspiring first-generation college students and others who don’t have access to strong college counseling/advising programs. The center will run a free program to help students prepare to take standardized tests, such as the SAT and ACT. It will also teach students about the college application process, how to choose the university that is the best fit for them, how to navigate the financial aid process to maximize scholarship assistance and what to expect once they get to college. The center will also educate parents about the college application process and connect them with other families.
Tulane will partner with community-based organizations to make sure area students are aware of these programs and to expand the reach and impact of these programs. For more information, visit https://admission.tulane.edu/louisiana-promise .