CMU Offers Free Tuition For Some Dual Credit Students

In an effort to boost access to college coursework, Central Methodist University’s board of trustees has approved a measure to offer free dual credit tuition to high school students who qualify for free or reduced lunch.

While a handful of public colleges in Missouri have taken similar action, CMU is the first private institution to make such a move. President Roger Drake said the institution had sampled many of its dual credit partner schools before making its recommendation to the trustees.

“This helps the students we’re serving now and will help us reach others,” Drake said. “It will make transition into college life here much easier and more seamless.”

The free tuition for dual credit program will not only apply to online coursework, but also coursework on site at high schools or any of CMU’s campus locations.

Dr. Rita Gulstad, provost at CMU, said she hopes the measure will help families see a clear path to a college education and graduation.

“It’s a jump start,” Gulstad said. “Access to college is hard enough and we hope this will encourage someone to take a step they might have felt not possible before.”

One of the schools involved in the program, Bunceton High School, was appreciative of CMU’s decision to help those who may not have been able to participate in dual credit before.

“This will mean so much to the students and families who were previously struggling with the cost of dual credit tuition or who were not able to consider these class options before,” said Shauna Baker, a counselor with Bunceton R-IV School District in Cooper County.

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