In this essay, Shirley M. Tilghman discusses the purpose, design, and impact of Princeton University's no-loan financial aid policy, which was enacted in 2001. As the centerpiece of an aid and recruitment strategy that seeks to improve college access despite growing socioeconomic stratification, the policy obliges Princeton to meet all student financial need with grants rather than loans. Thanks to its financial wellbeing, the university is now able to remove the financial barriers to enrollment and free its students from the obligation to repay tuition debt upon graduation. While not intended to be a prescription for all, Princeton hopes to set an example for other institutions to improve their own financial aid programs in an effort to meet student need in a generous, equitable, and transparent manner.

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