Starting next fall, Arizona State University will be giving full scholarships to any and all students enrolling in its full-time MBA program, the Wall Street Journal reports. That means students can earn their business degrees for a whopping zero dollars. University administrators swear the desert sun hasn't baked their brains; rather they hope this new program will bring in students with "nontraditional backgrounds and career aims," as the Journal puts it. “We’re very hopeful that we’ll get more high-quality applicants as a result of this program, and the kinds of people who might think they can’t pursue a top MBA program,” Fortune quotes from a statement by dean Amy Hillman.
The new kinds of business students Arizona State University is hoping to attract? People who want to work for nonprofits or startups, single parents, entrepreneurs, and women. The Arizona Republic reports 70% of the university's current MBA students are male. According to the Journal, an MBA degree at the university typically costs between $54,000 and $90,000. The new program will be paid for with a $50 million donation from philanthropist William Carey, and full scholarships will be available for up to 120 students. So how are current MBA students facing post-graduation debt handling the news? Surprisingly well, it turns out. "Would I rather not pay tuition? Sure,” Ryan Butler, a second-year MBA student, tells the Journal. “But I’m excited about the direction of the program."