ADA, Ohio -- Ohio Northern University announced a new initiative today to lower student debt by slashing tuition rates by at least 20 percent and offering a four-year graduation guarantee.
Officials from the Ada-based private college unveiled "The Ohio Northern Promise," at a news conference at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus. The university will lower 2014-2015 tuition rates by between 20 and 25 percent for incoming students, and said net tuition for current undergraduates will be frozen next year at current rates.
The four-year graduation guarantee will allow students who "meet specific standards and expectations for progress toward a four-year degree" to receive a free additional semester if they are unable to graduate in four years, according to a university announcement.
“The conventional high-tuition and high-financial aid model is not working today and is no longer sustainable,” ONU President Daniel DiBiasio said at the news conference. “This is a way forward that seeks to make a quality education more available to the best students we can attract. It’s all about affordable excellence. ”
The university said the initiative was developed over the past year, and its Board of Trustees approved the plan Oct. 5.