ROCK HILL, SC (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – Tuition for Clinton College is about $20,000 per year. But as of Monday, new and returning students don’t have to worry about a thing. 

The College says their tuition has been paid in full. 

After a year of virtual learning, Clinton College students are back on campus and in the classrooms.

President Dr. Lester McCorn had a hefty gift for new and returning students.

“I am happy to make this major announcement today all enrolled students in the 2021-22 academic year, Clinton College is going to offer you free tuition,” Dr. McCorn said during a Facebook Live last week.

Senior Elijah Rogers and Sophomore Latasia White say this is a feeling they’ll never forget.

“I was like ah shoot, we got free tuition, I see y’all doing a lil’ something, something,” Rogers said. 

And White says she screamed. “Well I didn’t exactly scream but that’s what my mind was doing… but that’s a big blessing,” White replied. 

A big blessing that came during one of her hardest times.

“At the same time, I was going through a lot of trouble at home because My grandmother had just passed, so my family had to pay funeral costs and my mom being sick with her kidney disease, so I just wanted to help them out, so it was always hard for money,” White says. 

Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management Jocelyn Biggs says the funds to do this came from the CARES Act.

“We do know that some families are still struggling financially, and this is our way of not being a financial burden to those families by offering free tuition,” Biggs said. She says enrollment increased and they’re still in the process of registering students. 

For the last three years, Rogers has paid for school through student loans, and working through the summer to pay out of pocket.

“But now that we have free tuition, it’s like I can kind of fall back a little and see what’s going to unfold next,” Rogers said. 

White picked up a job at Hobby Lobby working over 25 hours a week to help pay for school. That coupled with her 6 Biology classes, she was burnt out. She was prepared to do a work-study this semester.

“It’s still going to be hard but at the end of the day I know God’s with me so I’m going to continue to strive and keep my best energy up since they’re doing this for us,” White said. 

The free tuition is for on-campus and online students as well. 

Along with that, students also received a new Microsoft Surface Go.