Curtis Institute of Music

Tuition Free Schools to Combat Escalating College Costs


  • Span Liberal Arts, Fine Arts, Engineering
  • Work Study Options
  • Feature ‘Hands On’ Learning

While there is no such thing as a free lunch, there is such a thing as free tuition. A group of colleges offer students tuition free education with one exception: Olin School of Engineering has had to become only half tuition free as a result of its endowment faring poorly during the recent recession; it is, though, still a value at half the tuition price, and thereby warrants a spot on this list. The service academies (West Point, the Air Force Academy, Annapolis, the Coast Guard Academy…) are all free of tuition and all other expenses: they even give their cadets a monthly stipend; however, they do require post-graduate service commitments. The following ‘tuition free’ institutions, on the other hand, offer students the opportunity to study liberal arts, fine arts, and engineering, without a huge debt-load at the end of the experience or backend service requirements.   Let’s explore the schools by their curriculum.

Liberal Arts:

  • Deep Springs College ( is a two-year liberal arts institution, founded in 1917 and has only 26 students. Beginning the summer of 2013, it will begin admitting female applicants. The college is located on 5,000 arid acres, on the Nevada, California border. Tuition, room and board are free. In exchange, students work the ranch 20 hours a week. Most of the students, upon finishing their 2-year stint at Deep Springs, transfer to some of the most selective schools in the country. (A superb write-up of the school can be found in The Fiske Guide to Colleges, 2012.)
  • College of the Ozarks ( located in the southern Missouri Ozarks, offers majors in business, education and criminal justice. To offset tuition, the school requires each student to dedicate 15 hours per week in a work study program on its farm or in other workstations.  College of the Ozarks is a standard 4-year college.

Fine Arts:

  • Curtis Institute of Music ( is located in the heart of Philadelphia. If you’re seeking a degree in music performance and theory, and you are a top flight performer, this school warrants an application. Though only 4% of its applicants are accepted, should you be among this number, you will gain a superior musical education, tuition free.
  • Cooper Union (, in the Greenwich Village area of New York City, is well known for its programs, which emphasize design, in engineering, architecture, along with the visual and performing arts. The school has a lengthy history as it was here in 1860 that Lincoln’s speech propelled him to a presidential win. About 11 % of applicants are admitted.


  • Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering ( is located just outside of Boston in Needham, Massachusetts. It offers majors in electrical, mechanical, and general engineering. The school was founded in 2002, with a $490 million grant from the FW Olin Institute. In 2010, the year the school went half tuition free, 768 students applied, 16% were accepted.
  • The Webb Institute ( located in Glen Cove, New York, specializes in teaching its students how to ‘advance the art of shipbuilding.’ This is a 4-year intensive engineering program that features an annual 2-month internship (winter term) aboard a vessel. The school is tuition-free; however, room and board and extraneous expenses are not covered. In 2010, 73 students applied; 38% were accepted. Its only major is naval architecture and marine engineering.  

Gaining admission into most of the above institutions is, as you would expect, competitive. All approach learning with a lot of ‘hands on’ experience: Deep Springs you work the ranch; Ozarks, the farm; Curtis, you perform; Cooper Union and Olin, you participate in a lot of projects; and, at the Webb Institute you take an annual 2-month jaunt aboard a vessel somewhere in the world.  Best of all, however, each institution’s tuition (and half of Olin’s) is, as Peter Cooper, the founder of Cooper Union said, “as free as water and air.”   Ivy College Prep, LLC,, (714) 734-8100. Ralph Becker, a resident of Long Beach, has been counseling students for the last 6 years. A former Yale Alumni interviewer, he holds a certificate in college counseling from UCLA Extension, and has published SAT* Vocab 800, Books A, B, C, &D.

치솟는 등록금 피해 거의 등록금이 없는 대학 찾기

  • 인문학, 예술, 공학분야
  • 공부와 병행
  • 실습위주의 특징

요즈음 공짜 점심 먹기도 어려운데, 등록금이 거의 무료인 대학이 있다.  몇 대학들이 한가지의 조건을 달면서 등록금이 무료이다: Olin 공대는 현재 어려운 경제시기에 자산이 줄면서, 등록금의 50%를 받지만, 정말 가치가 있으므로 이 칼럼의 한 자리를 차지하게 되었다.  물론, 사관학교들 (West Point, the Air Force Academy, Annapolis, the Coast Guard Academy등)은 수업료와 모든 비용이 무료이며, 매달 용돈까지 있다; 한편, 복무의 의무가 있다.   반면, 다음의 ‘등록금 무료’대학들은 인문학, 예술, 공학대학들은 졸업 후 지게 되는 빚도 없고, 복무의 의무도 없다.  그러면, 교과과정을 자세히 살펴보자.

인문학 분야:

  • Deep Springs College ( 은 1917년에 세워진 2년제 인문대학으로 26명이 정원이다.  2013년 여름부터는 여학생도 받는다.  캠퍼스는 가주 근방인 네바다 사막에 5,000에이커를 갖고 있다.  등록금, 기숙사비 모두 무료이다.  다만, 일주일 20시간의 근로를 해야 한다.  대부분의 학생들은 2년 후 명문대학으로 진학하고 있다 (이 대학에 대한 우수한 평가가 The Fiske Guide to Colleges, 2012에 나와 있다).
  • College of the Ozarks (는 미주리 남부 Ozarks 에 위치해 있으며, 경제, 교육, 범죄학의 전공이 있으며, 등록금을 대신하여 주당 15시간을 농장이나 다른 일터에서 일을 하는 근로프로그램을 요구한다.  전형적인 4년제 대학이다.

예술 분야:

  • Curtis Institute of Music ( 는 Philadelphia의 중심부에 위치해 있으며, 음악연주와 이론의 학위를 원하고 훌륭한 연주가라면, 응시할 수 있다.  응시생의 4%를 선발하며, 여러분이 그 범위에 든다면, 우수한 음악교육을 무료로 받을 수 있다.
  • Cooper Union(은 뉴욕시의 Greenwich village지역에 위치해 있으며, 시각과 행위예술과 더불어 디자인, 공학, 건축학으로 유명하다.  1860년에 설립되었으며, 링컨의 연설이 대통령 선거에 이기게 한 유래도 있다.  응시생의 11%정도 입학된다. 


  • Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering ( 전기공학, 기계공학, 일반 공학을 제공한다.  2002년에 FW Olin 연구소로부터 $490million의 기부금으로 설립되었으며, 2010년에는 50%의 등록금을 받으며, 768명이 응시하여 16%가 입학되었다.
  • The Webb Institute ( 는 뉴욕의 Glen Cove에 위치해 있으며, ‘선진 조선술’을 전문으로 한다.  4년제의 집중 공학프로그램과 2달간 승선하는 인턴십 (겨울)을 요구하며, 등록금은 무료이다.  단지 기숙사와 기타 비용은 포함하지 않는다.  2010년에는 73명이 응시하여 38%가 입학했다.   주 정공은 해양 건축과 해양공학이다.

위의 대학들은 경쟁이 매우 심하다.  모든 공부는 실습위주이다: Deep Springs는 랜치의 일경험; Ozarks는 농장경험; Curtis는 연주경험; Cooper Union and Olin은 프로젝트에 참가를 요구한다.  그럼에도 불고하고 큰 매력은 Cooper Union의 창시자인 Peter Cooper의 말처럼 등록금이 ‘물과 공기처럼 공짜’라는 점이다.