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Sep 07, 2016 09:55 AM EDT

Free College? Find Out Which Cities Offer Free Colleges Since Ever

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Free colleges could just be a few miles from your own home. In a recent report, there are cities that found to have been offering free colleges for years. But not a lot of people know this.

Have you heard Promise Programs? Market Watch cites that there are a few out there. Take El Dorado, Ark. for example. A promise program opened up in the area and was able to send high school graduates to college with money to cover tuition at any public school back in 2007. It is being funded by the city's own Murphy Oil. It created a college-going culture.

 "I spend the very first day of school each year, telling kindergartners that they can go to college," says Sylvia Thompson, the executive director of El Dorado Promise.

While electorial candidates and politicians continue to propose debt free tuitions or free college education for the whole country, not a lot of people know that there are more than 150 College Promise Programs in 37 states already.

Michelle Miller-Adams, a researcher at the W.E. UpJohn Institute says that it happens at the local level. She is part of an independent research group in Kalamazoo, Mich. She calls it a local grassroots innovation that responds to local needs and builds on local assets. Also, built on local assets. It could very well be jumping to a state level.

But promise programs do not necessarily cover the full cost of four years in college or university. One thing to note is that these programs are "place based." Which means that students are housed in their communities. This enable affordability which is one of the programs' goals. It inspires the K-12 system and acts as a means to draw families to the community. Market Watch states that people are likely to stay if they have access to education and jobs that accompany it.

Find out if your area also provides promise programs by asking your school's tuition and college assistance office.

Check out this Promise Program video below:

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