Brown University raising $120 million to eliminate all student loans

Brown University has initiated a $120 million campaign to drop all loans from financial aid packages awarded to their undergraduates.

Student debt is at an all-time high — the average outstanding balance is $34,144, up 62 percent over the last 10 years — and Brown will become the sixteenth U.S. institution, and the sixth in the Ivy League (excluding Cornell and Dartmouth), to offer all of its undergraduates a loan-free education.

In 2016, the average Brown student graduated with a debt of $23,810, compared with $8,908 for Princeton, which adopted the no-loans policy in 2001.

The plan aims to replace financial aid packages with grants that do not have to be repaid. All undergraduates — domestic and international — will be included, university President Christina Paxson said.