The University of Central Florida Board of Trustees voted unanimously Thursday to extend the in-state tuition rate for U.S. Virgin Island and Puerto Rican students affected by Hurricane Maria.

“These brave students are inspiring, and I am as committed to their academic success as they are,” said President Whittaker.

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“Thank you to our Board of Trustees for its enthusiastic vote to waive out-of-state tuition for Puerto Rican students. We are 100 percent committed to supporting our Puerto Rican community.”

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The original tuition waiver ran through Spring 2019, a year and a half after Hurricane Maria devastated the island and left it without power for a year. Approximately 250 Puerto Rican students enrolled at UCF this Fall on top of the 200 who transferred to UCF in January.

The in-state tuition also waives out-of-state fees for four more years as well as “expands eligibility to include students already in the educational pipeline at any of Florida’s 28 public state colleges.” The aid also applies to students enrolling 2019 at a rate of $6,368 per year versus $22,478 a year.

“First, I’m here to say thank you to UCF, thank you for everything you have done for these students and for Puerto Rico,” said industrial engineering student Jennifer Tirado, the president of UCF’s Puerto Rican Student Association, at Thursday’s BOT meeting.

“This decision is also about our UCF values – serving, being leaders, and being an example for other universities.”

Photo: UCF Communications.