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Colleges Hope New Name Attracts Students To Aid Program

Chris / Flickr

Chris / Flickr

The California Community College System hopes changing the name of a free tuition program will get more eligible students to take advantage of it.

For more than three decades, students at the state's 114 Community College campuses have been offered a program known as the Board of Governor's Fee Waiver.

Research showed many of those students didn't understand it was direct financial aid.

Now the state is changing the program's name to the Promise Grant, a name that reflects similar programs in other states and on some individual California campuses.

"We're hopeful that the name change helps students complete their applications for it and than more students are able to take advantage of it," said Rhonda Mohr with California Community Colleges.

She said the Promise Grant doesn't cut into other scholarship or grant sources a student may be receiving.

"Even if a student is only taking three units, if we can pay the $46-per-unit and that student can use that $150 to help buy the book for that class, we are far ahead of the game," Mohr said.

The funds to cover those costs come from rules set up by Proposition 98, passed by voters nearly 30 years ago.

California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation.

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