Access through Financial Aid

Anna Rodriguez, A18

Anna Rodriguez, A18. Photo: Alonso Nichols

For many students, the transforma­tive experiences promised by Tufts start with access. Tufts President Anthony P. Monaco—who was a financial aid student during his undergraduate career—issued a challenge in 2012. The university would match donations of $100,000 or more to create new endowed scholarships, or gifts of $100,000 or more to existing scholarships, thereby doubling their value and impact. By the time the Financial Aid Initiative concluded in 2016, hundreds of donors had contributed a total of $95 million, surpassing the $90 million goal.

Nearly $50 million more has been raised since the conclusion of the Financial Aid Initiative, and the university will continue to focus on raising financial aid dollars throughout Brighter World: The Campaign for Tufts. These funds will serve students from all socioeconomic backgrounds and ensure Tufts remains a vibrant, diverse intellectual community.

Improving access to Tufts also means easing the transition from high school to college. Two innovative programs support incoming fresh­men who are the first in their families to attend a four-year program or who come from underrepresented high schools: Bridge to Engineering Success at Tufts (BEST) and Bridge to Liberal Arts Success at Tufts (BLAST). “BLAST gently pushed me out of my comfort zone, to take risks,” said Anna Rodriguez, A18, a double major in community health and education. “It broke down the barrier to college for me—a low-income Afro-Latina woman of color who went to public school. I’ve learned confidence and resilience—and I know I can accomplish whatev­er I put my mind to.”