• Beth & Tim Manners

Williams Cuts Tuition by 15 Percent

Bloomberg: "Williams College, the richest liberal arts school in the U.S., is reducing its cost by 15% for families on a one-time basis for the coming academic year and canceling sports competition and travel for the season as the coronavirus upends higher education ... Tuition, room and board for the 2020-2021 academic year will be $63,200. Family contributions for students receiving financial aid will also be reduced by 15%." Williams President Maud Mandel comments:“This reduction recognizes the fact that the pandemic and associated challenges are requiring us to cancel winter study as well as fall athletics competition and many student activities, among other opportunities that we usually encourage families to expect as part of their student’s education.”

"Schools across the U.S. are coping with uncertainty for the year that begins in August or September as it’s largely unclear whether in-person courses will be offered given the rise in Covid-19 cases. Students at dozens of schools have already balked at the full price for last semester’s tuition with months of online classes, suing for billions of dollars in refunds. A few dozen private colleges have cut their tuition charges over the years, but not typically the most elite ones."

"The move by Williams, which has about 2,100 students, may put pressure on other selective liberal arts schools to follow. Davidson College in North Carolina said in April that families could postpone their payments when the bills come in July ... The public College of William & Mary in May said it would roll back a previously adopted tuition increase for incoming in-state undergraduates and keep tuition and mandatory fees flat. The wealthiest schools such as Williams may have the most financial flexibility. The endowment at Williams was worth $2.9 billion as of June 2019, the most recent public value ... Students may opt to return to campus, study remotely or take a leave or gap year."

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