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Portland State University extends in-state tuition rates for tribal members from across the United States.

PMG FILE PHOTO - Victory Begay, an associate professor at Portland State University, speaks to an audience during an annual event called, 'Deconstructing Thanksgiving' at PSU's Native American Student and Community Center.Native American students from anywhere in the United States can now attend Portland State University for the same price as Oregon residents.

PSU announced July 21 that the college will offer in-state tuition rates for undergraduate programs to any member of a federally-recognized tribe. Tribal members just need to provide their tribal enrollment card, or a letter issued by a tribe's enrollment office to receive the in-state discount.

With the expanded tuition discount rates, qualifying students will see a discount of $420 per credit hour, which adds up to about $19,000 per academic year for a student enrolled in 15 units per term.

Previously, the program was not available to Native students outside of Oregon.

"Portland State offers this benefit to tribal members as part of our ongoing effort to provide a welcoming environment for Indigenous students in downtown Portland," Chuck Knepfle, PSU's vice president of enrollment management, said in an announcement about the new program. "This offer of in-state tuition is a small way to honor the legacy of Indigenous nations from across the country."

In addition to the expanded tuition rate discount, the university offers a new Oregon Tribal Student grant for eligible members of Oregon's nine federally recognized tribes. The grant covers college-related expenses during the 2022-23 academic year.

The program is the latest to offer discounted tuition to out-of-state residents. In February, PSU announced a Washington-border discount to prospective students in 11 different counties in Washington.

Other scholarships, support programs and student groups for Native residents are also offered by PSU through its Native American Student & Community Center.

PSU isn't the first university trying to remove barriers for Native students. As reported by NPR in April, the University of California announced this spring that it will waive all tuition and fees as its campuses throughout the state for those who are California residents and members of a federally recognized tribe.


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