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Bills Introduced In States To Provide Tuition Relief

The price of an education continues to rise and a college degree is required to even think about competing in most areas of the job market today - or tomorrow. But there is some good news for college students and those paying for their education; tuition breaks and exemptions are coming up like April flowers after a healthy March rain.

The Texas-based Star-Telegram reports on a bill to provide free tuition to children of military personnel when at least one of the parents is stationed overseas. According to Rep. Marc Veasey of Fort Worth, the amendment would benefit about 1000 students. "This tuition exemption is a small way that we as a state can give back to these families who have given so much." The bill has passed its first two readings, and if passes the third and final vote, it will be presented to Texas governor Rick Perry for his signature.

There's better news for students needing tuition help in the state of Missouri. The News-Leader.com has good news for Missouri students starting at community colleges and later transferring to state universities. If the bill passes, free community college tuition will be available to Missouri high school students with a 2.5 GPA, 95% attendance and at least 50 hours of volunteer mentoring. If students complete a two-year associate degree with a B average or better, they will get two additional years of free tuition at a state university. Why the push to make tuition more affordable in Missouri? "We're starting to lag behind on students who have higher education degrees," said sponsoring Sen. Rob Mayer, R-Dexter. "For Missouri to continue to move forward in economic development, we're going to have to educate a greater number of our students."

More good news from the plains states. In Nebraska, the North Platte Bulletin reports that Mid-Plains Community College is cutting hourly tuition fees not only for in-state but also for students from the neighboring states of Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming and South Dakota in a program called the Good Neighbor rate.

Do prospective students need military parents, a plan for attending a community college, or a move to Missouri to get help with tuition? Not if Senator Robert P. Casey Jr. leads the way to a national program of free tuition for displaced workers. As described in the Tribune-Democrat of Johnstown, PA, funding would be provided to community colleges that voluntarily offer free tuition to laid off workers.

Michigan has addressed the triumvirate of unemployment, tuition costs for retraining, and a shortage of public health workers. According to the Great Lakes IT Report, qualified applicants can get tuition assistance to attend the University of Michigan. The No Worker Left Behind program covers tuition for students earning a Certificate in the Foundations of Public Health.

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