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‘Perform with Excellence Without Excuses’: South Carolina HBCU Offers Free Tuition, Microsoft Laptops to Full-Time Students

A small college in South Carolina just dropped some massive news on its students. Shortly after committing to cut tuition by nearly 50 percent, Clinton College in Rock Hill, South Carolina, announced that it would be offering all full-time students free education for the upcoming 2021-22 academic year.

Clinton College president Lester McCorn made the announcement on Aug. 5 that full-time students would not only be receiving a free year of education, but they’d also be gifted a Microsoft Surface laptop in an effort to guarantee students get their education despite possibly facing financial hardships. 

Clinton College President Lester McCorn announces that full-time students will receive free tuition and a laptop for the 2021-22 academic school year. Photo: Screenshot / YouTube

“As we have all had to deal with the challenges of COVID-19, it has been taxing for each and every one of us at Clinton College. We have done our best to keep the school moving forward and providing a quality education. Even in a virtual environment, we have missed having our students on campus.

I’m happy today after just spending some time with some of the scholars and students who are moving in to get that feel of campus life again, and we want to bring all of our students back and welcome our new students in spite of the challenges of COVID-19,” McCorn said in a video posted to the college’s YouTube page on Aug. 5. 

“With that being said, I am happy to make this major announcement today for all enrolled students in the 2021-22 academic year. Clinton College is going to offer you free tuition. Did you hear me? Free tuition. That’s a 100 percent discount in tuition this year.”

According to the school’s website, the cost of tuition for full-time students is $4,960 per semester, while a full year costs $9,920. President McCorn noted that fully vaccinated students are permitted to live on campus. However, they would have to cover fees for room and board. Meanwhile, non-vaccinated full-time students are encouraged to continue taking courses online, and tuition will still be accessible for them.

“We want to make sure you can perform with excellence without excuse,” McCorn added, welcoming back new and returning “Golden Bears.”

Clinton College was established roughly 120 years ago during Reconstruction “to help eradicate illiteracy among freedmen.” Though in a rare group that’s offered free tuition, the school now joins several other historically Black institutions that have assisted their students in some financial capacity or another.

South Carolina State, Clark Atlanta University, Spelman College and many more institutions have canceled student debt, using $5 billion in Higher Education Emergency Relief federal pandemic funds.

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