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Yale Drama School Goes Tuition-Free After $150 Million Gift From David Geffen

Yale Drama School Goes Tuition-Free After $150 Million Gift From David Geffen

“David Geffen’s visionary generosity ensures that artists of extraordinary potential from all socioeconomic backgrounds will be able to cultivate their talent at Yale”

https://youtu.be/c32LM26Kzos

This is an excellent reminder that there is no such thing as ‘free’ college. Someone has to pay for it.

Inside Higher Ed reports:

Yale Drama School Goes Tuition-Free After Major Gift

Yale University’s drama school is now tuition-free, compliments of a $150 million gift from billionaire entertainment executive and philanthropist David Geffen.

The newly named David Geffen School of Drama at Yale University will no longer charge tuition for degree- and certificate-seeking students starting in fall 2021, the university announced Wednesday.

“David Geffen’s visionary generosity ensures that artists of extraordinary potential from all socioeconomic backgrounds will be able to cultivate their talent at Yale,” Peter Salovey, president of Yale, said in a statement. “It is exciting to think about what will be made possible by increasing access to the premier theater education at the David Geffen School of Drama.”

The school enrolls about 200 students and admits about 60 new students each year, Karen Peart, a spokesperson for Yale, said in an email. Tuition costs for the most recent academic year totaled $33,800. Students will still have to pay for living expenses, supplies and books, which are estimated to cost up to $22,268. The tuition remission is not retroactive, but it will apply to both new and returning students.

The decision to no longer charge tuition comes 16 years after the Yale School of Music went tuition-free in 2005 after receiving a $100 million gift from anonymous donors.

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Comments

The Friendly Grizzly | July 2, 2021 at 1:03 pm

Claire McGaskill will be the first student; she wants to improve her skills of being dramatic.

healthguyfsu | July 2, 2021 at 4:35 pm

Just what we need a “free” ivy league drama school.

I’m so over professional acting. I won’t go to a live or movie theater ever again, and I cut my ties to all streaming networks. I don’t have cable, either.

There are a number of ways of allocating financial aid to students. Most universities allocate it based upon financial need. That is, a student from a very low income family will receive a “full ride” while a student from a wealthy family will not receive any aid. In the case of Yale, drama and music students, it is allocated based on the student’s field of study — which is an implicit recognition that these fields will not yield high salaries. Another common method, which is appliable at Division I schools other than the Ivy League, is to allocate based upon athletic ability and participation in intercollegiate sports. Finally, donors can endow scholarship funds that in many cases are targeted to types of students. These scholarship funds displace unrestricted funds that would otherwise be allocated to financial aid.

None of these methods makes very much economic sense. However, it reflects the judgment and values of the donor. In contrast, many donors will donate to build a building or facility or to endow a professorship. The impact is to strengthen the institution and hopefully lower tuition for everyone.

In all of these cases, the university has the ability to “back fill” with unrestricted funds such as tuition, so the net result is not different than would be achieved if the administration had deployed assests using its priorities rather than the donors.

So, these gifts make a statement about what is important to the donor and his values. Ultimately, they do not reveal what is important to the college and its administration or how the school’s strengths will evolve.

For example, if David Geffen had donated $150 million to the Columbia University football program, would Columbia ever become a football powerhouse? Will the Yale School of Drama ever become more influential because of this gift?

henrybowman | July 3, 2021 at 2:40 am

Hollywood is so eleemosynary!
Now woke youth can attend drama school bail tuition-free!

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