Wednesday, September 29, 2021
  Announcements, Around Campus

By News and Internal Communications

RIO GRANDE VALLEY — The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley announced today an expansion to its already highly competitive Tuition Advantage program.

Beginning Fall 2022, the program will cover cost of tuition and mandatory fees for eligible students with a family income of $100,000 or less and with unmet financial need.

Tuition Advantage’s $100,000 income threshold is the largest of any free-tuition program in the state and is believed to the largest in the nation.

President Guy Bailey said this expansion is another example of the UTRGV’s commitment to providing a high-quality education at an affordable price.

“As I’ve said many times before, at UTRGV, we want to ensure that our students can obtain a degree without having to mortgage their futures,” he said. “Providing this additional support is especially important right now, as many of our students and their families continue to struggle financially because of the pandemic.”

UTRGV Tuition Advantage is open to all in-state undergraduate students (incoming freshmen and current, readmitted, and transfer students) who meet the program’s requirements

The program is particularly important to new students who join UTRGV during Fall of 2022 because they could pay an increased fee if a student referendum passes this November. The referendum is seeking an $11.25 increase per credit hour (up to 12 hours only) to the Intercollegiate Athletics Fee to, over the next four years, expand spirit programs and establish marching bands in both Brownsville and Edinburg, a women’s swimming and diving program, and a football program.

Currently enrolled students continuing enrollment in their current level will not pay the proposed increase until Fall 2025 because of UTRGV’s Guaranteed Tuition plan. And for new students who will have to pay, Magdalena Hinojosa, senior vice president for Strategic Enrollment and Student Affairs, said the Tuition Advantage expansion will help to offset the increase for many.

“We are one of the most affordable institutions in Texas and in the country, and we are committed to keeping it that way,” Hinojosa said. “We truly believe that the proposed referendum will greatly enhance the university’s campus experience, and supplementing that with a bigger and better Tuition Advantage is the perfect combination.”

UTRGV, which last year was named the nation’s top public university for least student debt, always has been committed to keeping costs low for students. The university has one of the lowest average tuitions among the state’s public universities and offers:

  • Guaranteed Tuition: UTRGV’s tuition is guaranteed for all students for four years, meaning costs will not increase during this period.
  • 12-Hour Cap: UTRGV caps tuition charges at 12 hours, which means any additional courses a student enrolls in after 12 hours are free. For example, if a student enrolls in 15 hours, the extra class is free; 18 hours, the two extra classes are free.

And in the recent Washington Monthly college rankings, UTRGV is:

  • 1st in Texas and 2nd among national public universities for lowest price of attendance
  • 1st in Texas and 3rd among national public universities for performance of Pell-eligible students
  • 3rd in Texas and 55th among national public universities for social mobility of students


The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) was created by the Texas Legislature in 2013 as the first major public university of the 21st century in Texas. This transformative initiative provided the opportunity to expand educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley, including a new School of Medicine, and made it possible for residents of the region to benefit from the Permanent University Fund – a public endowment contributing support to the University of Texas System and other institutions.

UTRGV has campuses and off-campus research and teaching sites throughout the Rio Grande Valley including in Boca Chica Beach, Brownsville (formerly The University of Texas at Brownsville campus), Edinburg (formerly The University of Texas-Pan American campus), Harlingen, McAllen, Port Isabel, Rio Grande City, and South Padre Island. UTRGV, a comprehensive academic institution, enrolled its first class in the fall of 2015, and the School of Medicine welcomed its first class in the summer of 2016.