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Average MIT financial aid grant up 19% to $19,000 next year

$3,100 average increase parallels $600 million MIT program to enhance student life and learning

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., March 2 -- The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in the midst of a $600 million program to enhance the education and campus experience of its students, today announced a major increase in its scholarship program. Next year, it will give undergraduate aid recipients an average need-based grant of $19,000 --19 per cent more than this year.

MIT is revising its financial aid package to require $2000 less in loans or term-time work, which will be replaced by grants. This $2000 reduction in "self-help" for every student, combined with additional aid that is tied to tuition, means that the average need-based grant will increase by $3,100, to $19,000.

The average financial package, including grants, term-time work and loans, will be about $24,600 -- covering more than 70 percent of tuition, fees, room and board.

Tuition next year will increase 3.5 percent, to $26,960. The total of tuition, fees, room and board will increase 3.7 percent to $34,460, an increase of $1,235.

"This is the third major financial aid increase in as many years," said MIT President Charles M. Vest. "In 1999, MIT launched a major financial aid initiative as part of its long-standing commitment to admitting students without regard to their ability to pay, and meeting their full need through grants, low-cost loans and work-study opportunities.

"Financial aid based on the individual need of each family is crucial at MIT, where one in five students is the first in his or her family to go to college. We want to make an MIT education possible for students with the highest potential in science and engineering and, while they are here, we want to give them the best possible educational experience inside and outside the classroom. This increase in scholarship assistance is part of our commitment to this goal."

Seventy-five percent of MIT undergraduates receive some form of financial aid, and come from families with incomes ranging from poverty level to as much as $150,000, depending on such factors as the number of children they have in college.

For graduates of MIT, the average starting salary last June for a graduate with a bachelor's degree was $51,700.

MIT next year will give 43 percent more money in grants than in 1999. MIT's grant budgetfor next year is estimated at $41 million, and its overall budget for financial aid is expected to be $80 million from all sources.

"Alumni and friends have stepped forward with gifts of over $80 million specifically for scholarships and undergraduate aid thus far in the Campaign for MIT. Annual support of scholarships in the Alumni Fund exceeds $6 million. This extraordinary generosity has made this increase in financial aid possible," Dr. Vest said.

"This increase in financial aid is part of a $600 million program to enhance student life and learning at MIT," Dr. Vest said. "We are raising $100 million for undergraduate financial aid and $200 million for graduate fellowships, and we have committed another $300 million to major innovations in our educational programs, to four student residences and a state-of-the-art sports and fitness center."

Dean for Undergraduate Education Robert Redwine commented, "I am very pleased that MIT is able to reduce significantly the need for financial aid students to borrow or to work during the academic year, and is investing so much in student life and important educational initiatives. We are already seeing many exciting experiments in teaching, and we expect that these new investments will really improve the educational experience for our students."

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