DETROIT, Oct. 23, 2019: Wayne State University has
announced the establishment of the Heart of Detroit Tuition
Pledge, which will provide free tuition for graduates of a
Detroit high school or Detroit residents earning a
high school diploma, and admitted to Wayne State University
as a full-time freshman in fall 2020.
According to planners, the Heart of Detroit Tuition Pledge
could potentially provide free tuition to the 49,276 students
currently enrolled in Detroit Public Schools and thousands of
other Detroit residents.
Wayne State President M. Roy Wilson emceed the event;
Governor Gretchen Whitmer, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan,
and Detroit Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Chrystal
Wilson were all on hand at the Communication and Media
Arts High School in Detroit for the announcement.
“This is a tremendous day for Wayne State and for Detroit
students,” said WSU President M. Roy Wilson. “This
initiative aligns perfectly with many of our institutional
values. Opportunity, accessibility and affordability are all
pillars of the high-quality education we provide, and the Heart
of Detroit Tuition Pledge delivers on all those values. With the
resources and opportunities on campus and the exciting
resurgence in Detroit, it’s never been a better time to be a
The Heart of Detroit Tuition Pledge
fills the gap to cover tuition and mandatory fees. The tuition
pledge will launch in the fall of 2020. To be eligible for the
Heart of Detroit Tuition Pledge, students must meet the
Live in the city of Detroit and have graduated from high school
or have graduated from any Detroit high school (public, private,
charter, parochial, or home school program) in 2020 or after.
Join RaiseMe, a Wayne State partner, which allows high
school students to log their achievements and activities to earn
Receive admission to Wayne State University as a first-time,
full-time freshman in fall 2020 or after.
Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) by
March 1, for the following fall.
“The Heart of Detroit Tuition Pledge reaffirms Wayne
State’s long-standing commitment to the city and its residents,”
said Wayne State Provost Keith Whitfield. “This
solidifies our status as the university of choice for Detroit
students. I’d like to thank Associate Vice President of
Enrollment Management Dawn Medley and her team for making this
scholarship a reality.”
The Heart of Detroit Tuition Pledge
will be available to eligible first-time freshmen and expand on
the current Wayne ACCESS award, which has enabled more than
2,300 students statewide to enroll with zero out-of-pocket
expenses for tuition and fees since its introduction in fall
Since 2011, Wayne State has partnered with the Detroit
Regional Chamber in support of the Detroit Promise
program, which has offered scholarships to unlimited Detroit
In 2017, Detroit was designated a Talent Hub by the
Foundation and The
Kresge Foundation. This designation recognizes
cities that meet rigorous standards for creating environments
that attract, retain and cultivate talent, particularly among
today’s students — many of whom are people of color, the first
in their families to go to college and from low-income
households. Detroit is one of only 24 Talent Hubs in the
country. As a Talent Hub, the city and its stakeholders —
including Wayne State University — have committed to work
together to help address the growing demand for workers with an
education beyond high school.
Also in 2017, WSU launched the
Back program – a novel approach to re-engaging
students who left the university with debt but without a degree.
There are nearly 700,000 people in the Detroit area with some
college, but no degree. To date, the program has helped more
than 100 students re-enroll and work toward degree completion at
WSU, and has served as a national model for other universities
looking to welcome back returning students.
In April 2019, WSU joined the Detroit Regional Chamber to help
create a regional debt forgiveness program, which was designed
based on the Warrior Way Back program.
For complete information about the scholarship, visit