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It’s Official! Paul Quinn Is The First HBCU Work College

Paul Quinn College's football field after being converted into a garden.

Paul Quinn College’s football field after being converted into a garden.

After a two-year application process, Paul Quinn College has become the first HBCU to meet the Department of Education’s standards for the “work college” designation. As of Monday morning, Paul Quinn now joins seven other institutions trailblazing this new method for potentially reducing student debt.

Unlike traditional work study programs, whose distribution is based solely on the student’s financial needs —since 2015—every student at Paul Quinn, has either a job on campus or with a local business in Dallas, Texas. According to college president Michael Sorrell, due to 80 percent of students being eligible for Federal Pell Grant’s, a majority of the students at Paul Quinn can graduate with less than $10,000 in debt, as well as gain valuable professional training.

PQCMarqueeReduce College Debt

Though work colleges seem like a viable way to reduce college debt, the future of their funding is currently uncertain. As of right now, work colleges are allocated funding via the federal work study program, and in its budget proposal last Wednesday, the Trump administration suggested making cuts to the same program. As well as funding cuts, the administration is looking to make monetary allocation more need-based, rather than embracing a model that lets each student work to reduce debt across the board.

Raz Robinson, JournalistArticle by Raz Robinson, journalist and freelance writer, based in New York City and Philadelphia. You can connect with him on LinkedIn, email at razrobinson9(at)gmail(dot)com, or follow on Twitter @razrobinson.

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