Tuition Equity

Let’s Learn NC is project of the Adelante Education Coalition. This project advocates for the same college tuition for ALL North Carolina students, because higher education should be accessible to all state residents. To learn more about our efforts and the state of education for undocumented students in North Carolina, select a section.

Current Policies

North Carolina Policies

DACA and Tuition Exemptions-Jan. 2014: The purpose of this memo is not to communicate a change in the State Board’s “Admission to Colleges” policy, but to give colleges further clarification on how individuals with DACA classification should be treated under the State Board’s current “Admission to Colleges” policy. Again, it is important to note that the State Board of Community Colleges has not amended its “Admission to Colleges” policy.

National Policies

FACT: Having an educated workforce is a key driver of economic growth and the most important indicator of one’s potential earnings over a lifetime.

FACT: by 2020, 61 percent of jobs in North Carolina will require higher education. Job growth is expected to increase by 21 percent in the same period.

FACT: So far, 16 states have passed legislation allowing certain undocumented graduates of high school to pay in-state rates for college (4 allow students to apply for financial aid). Others have introduced legislation.

“They are part of our future, so it only makes sense to lower barriers to additional educational advancement and achievement….The more education they attain, the better positioned they are to become contributing citizens,” said Republican State Sen. Lloyd Smucker of Pennsylvania after introducing legislation for his state to offer in-state tuition to qualified undocumented students.

FACT: Texas was the first state to pass legislation allowing eligible undocumented students to pay in-state tuition in 2001. Signed by Gov. Rick Perry, the bill received near unanimous support.

FACT: Maryland voters passed a referendum in 2012 to allow qualified undocumented students to pay in-state college tuition.

FACT: The estimated total net benefits to the economy of one graduating class of undocumented students who take advantage of Maryland’s in-state tuition policies are approximately $66 million in 2011 dollars.

FACT: Studies show 31 percent more Latino non-citizens enroll in higher education in states with inclusive in-state tuition policies.

FACT: Inclusive in-state tuition policies reduce the dropout rate of non-citizen Latinos by an estimate of 14 percent, studies show.

“Are we going to send these young people on a path to be successful and be part of the Texas success story? Or are we going to prohibit them because we’re not going to allow them to be able to afford to go to a university, and basically put them over onto government subsistence?”-Republican Gov. Rick Perry.