GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – UW-Green Bay and UW-Oshkosh are launching a new initiative to help students with tuition.

More than 8,000 students will be eligible for the Wisconsin Tuition Promise, a program that will cover the majority of four-year tuition and fees.

Students must come from families making less than $62,000 a year and are required to have a job during the school year.

UW System President Jay Rothman feels it is important that students are employed, saying “We think it’s an important piece for two reasons. One is we have a workforce shortage and we want to make sure we’re not pulling people out too rapidly. Secondly, we believe in some level of sweat equity that people have to invest.”

The money supporting this project in its first year comes from reallocating funds within the UW system. In the years following, Rothman hopes to work with local legislatures to receive the funding.

Rothman says, “The goal of this is to assist low and middle-income students so they can succeed, and build a better life for themselves but also for their families and generations to come.”

Because more than fifty percent of UW Green Bay’s undergraduates are first-generation, Chancellor Michael Alexander says this program could not have come at a better time.

“We need a vision like this to be able to help make sure those students continue to believe they can come to a UW school and continue to be able to stay, and graduate,” Alexander says.

Students will be eligible for the Wisconsin Tuition Promise in the Fall 2023 semester.