Paul Quinn College, a historically Black educational institution in Dallas, Texas, has announced that it will become the nation’s first urban work college. Beginning this fall, all students at the college will be given jobs either on campus or with local business that will offset their tuition and living expenses.
President Michael Sorrell has set tuition at $14,275 for on-campus students and $9,775 for students who live off-campus. But with the institution of the work college concept, he anticipates that students’ out-of-pocket expenses will be about $2,300 a year.
President Sorrell, who is a graduate of Oberlin College and Duke Law School, also said that beginning this fall, students will no longer have to pay for textbooks. All courses materials will be free, open-source texts.
“The New Urban College Model is the product of our Board of Trustees and this staff listening to our students and deciding that we could do more to address both their needs and the needs of our community,” stated President Sorrell. “We decided that it was no longer acceptable to pretend that higher education’s math equation added up. We think that our students deserve to receive two great academic experiences for the reasonable price of one. This is nation building.”
Paul Quinn College has a valuable partner in the enterprise. Mark Cuban, an internet tycoon and owner of the Dallas Mavericks basketball team, is consulting with the college and helping to develop course materials on entrepreneurship.
“I’m excited to be working with Paul Quinn College and President Sorrell to help remake the economics of the university experience,” said Cuban. “Our partnership will also include creating a unique approach to teaching entrepreneurship, with any and all materials available under an open source license for other institutions to use.”