A Debt-Free College State of Mind

January 5, 2017 | | US News |

On Tuesday, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo revived one of the signature policy proposals of the 2016 presidential campaign, announcing a plan to provide tuition-free college to students entering the state's two- and four-year state colleges and universities, through a new program called the Excelsior Scholarship. Should the plan be passed by the state legislature, New York would join the ranks of states likes of Tennessee and Oregon (in addition to dozens of cities) that have enacted some version of tuition-free public college.

It goes without saying that the election of Donald Trump and the failure of Democrats to gain a majority in the U.S. Senate have temporarily sidelined, at the national level at least, many of the forward-thinking policies outlined by the likes of Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders over the past year. But Cuomo's announcement, in the fourth-largest state in the union no less, shows that the appetite for addressing the college affordability crisis hasn’t yet diminished, and may just be gaining new momentum. [...]