NEW ORLEANS — Some students at the University of New Orleans will be eligible for a tuition break if they meet certain requirements and live in Orleans Parish, school officials said.

UNO officials plan to offer a "privateer pledge" to students whose families make less than $60,000. The pledge is designed so the university will pick up the remaining cost of tuition after scholarships and the student's federal aid are factored in. 

Essentially, the school would pay the remaining tuition cost rather than forcing students to take out loans. 

To qualify, students living in New Orleans must graduate from an Orleans Parish school (public or private) and enroll as freshman at UNO. 

They must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, commonly known as the FAFSA, and must be eligible for a Pell Grant. 

In-state tuition for UNO is estimated to be about $8,500. If a student receives a scholarship and a Pell Grant for $2,000 each, and their expected family contribution (as calculated by the FAFSA) is $500, the school plans to take on the remaining $4,000 rather than pass it on to the student. 

“A University of New Orleans education can transform a student’s life,” University President John Nicklow said in a statement announcing the pledge. “The Privateer Pledge is our promise to eligible Orleans Parish students that we will marshal all of the federal, state and institutional aid necessary to fill any financial gap for tuition and fees. This will support greater access to higher education and ensure there is one less obstacle in a student’s pursuit of a UNO degree.”  

The first group eligible for the privateer pledge must enroll as a full-time student before July 1, and must maintain at least a 2.0 GPA.

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