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By pooling resources with educational and cultural organizations, Bard microcolleges provide a cost-effective model for students who might otherwise not attend or graduate from college

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This January, Bard College will partner with Brooklyn Public Library to launch ‘Bard Microcollege,’ a free, fully-accredited associate in arts degree program. The microcollege program, inspired by the success of the Bard Prison Initiative, provides access to high-quality, tuition-free college opportunities to communities most often isolated from the university experience.

Since the launch of the first microcollege in August 2016, Bard has partnered with various distinguished organizations committed to supporting structurally disadvantaged members of society. At each site, Bard operates a three-year associate in arts degree program, while the partner institutions provide resources such as classroom and study space, scholarships, transportation and the social services students may need in order to focus on college. By pooling resources with educational and cultural organizations, the Bard microcollege program provides a cost-effective model for students who might otherwise never attend or graduate from college.

The program is funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and Pell grants. Additionally, financial aid will cover the cost of books, academic support and personalized guidance services. The admission process, which will take place throughout November at the Brooklyn Public Library, does not require standardized tests and transcripts. However, applicants should have a high school diploma or the equivalent; those whose household finances qualify them for Pell grants will be given priority.

Classes are scheduled to begin in January 2018 and will be held at the Central Library located at Grand Army Plaza.

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