The Wisconsin Tuition Promise is a new initiative to ensure underserved Wisconsin students can attend any UW System university, including UWM, without paying tuition or most fees. The program aims to increase the number of state residents who graduate with a bachelor’s degree – especially first-generation students and those from low-to-moderate income households. This will improve lives and help meet the state’s workforce needs.

Starting in Fall 2023, the tuition promise will provide up to four years of tuition and fee funding for students coming from families earning less than $62,000 annually. It’s structured to provide “last dollar” financial aid after federal and state grants; students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to qualify.

More information will be available later this year.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Wisconsin residents as determined for tuition purposes.
  • First-time bachelor- or associate-degree seeking (includes first-time transfer).
  • Must file a FAFSA each year, and in the first year, have $62,000 or lower adjusted gross income (AGI).
  • Eight semesters of eligibility total for bachelor-degree-seeking students. Four semesters of eligibility for associate-degree-seeking and transfer students. A student who transfers after the first year could be eligible for six semesters. The semester count will start in Fall 2023.
  • Fall and spring enrollment only.
  • Must meet Standards of Academic Progress (SAP) and other Title IV eligibility requirements.
  • Must be enrolled full-time (12 or more credits per semester).
  • Must be continuously enrolled.
  • Must have been employed at some point during the preceding year.

Additional Information

FAQs

What are the eligibility requirements for the Wisconsin Tuition Promise?
  • Must be a Wisconsin resident for tuition purposes
  • First-time bachelor’s or associate-degree seeking student (includes first-time transfers)
  • Must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year, and in the first year, have $62,000 or lower adjusted gross income (AGI). FAFSA uses prior prior year AGI. FAFSA for Fall 2023 (the 2023-24 academic year), will collect 2021 federal tax information. 
  • Must meet all Title IV eligibility requirements (i.e., being a U.S. citizen) 
  • Covers fall and spring enrollment only
  • Attend full-time (12+ credit hours) each semester
  • Must have been employed at some point during the preceding year
What are the requirements for continued eligibility?
  • Must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) and continue to meet all Title IV eligibility requirements.  
  • Eligibility is limited to eight semesters total for bachelor’s degree-seeking students and four semesters for associate degree-seeking and transfer students. A student who transfers after the first year could be eligible for six semesters. The semester count will start with the Fall 2023 term. 
  • Must be continuously enrolled (winter and summer terms excluded).

Is the FAFSA required?

Yes. All eligible students are required to submit the FAFSA and must do so on an annual basis. 

Is there a deadline to complete and submit the FAFSA? 

There is no specific deadline. However, students are encouraged to complete the relevant year FAFSA as soon as possible when it becomes available. The FAFSA opens on Oct. 1 prior to the start of the fall term. For example, the FAFSA for Fall 2023 will become available on Oct. 1, 2022.    

Do students need to apply for the Wisconsin Tuition Promise program?

No. Students who are admitted into an associate or bachelor degree-seeking program, complete the appropriate year FAFSA and certify employment will automatically be considered.

When does the Wisconsin Tuition Promise program begin?

It begins with students who first enroll starting with the Fall 2023 term.

Are students who start in the spring term eligible?

Yes, students who meet all the eligibility requirements will qualify if their first term of enrollment is Spring 2024, or any other spring term thereafter.

What if a student can’t attend full-time?

The program is designed to help students earn a degree in a timely fashion and with minimal debt. Full time enrollment during the fall and spring terms are required.

What is not included in the Wisconsin Tuition Promise program?

Housing, additional course fees, books, or any other charge a student may incur above tuition and segregated fees.