UA to Offer Free Tuition to Pell Grant Eligible New Students, Fall 2021

The Zips Affordability Scholarship is designed for incoming, first-time, full-time students eligible for the federal Pell-grant, attending The University of Akron.


Photo via The University of Akron

Making college more affordable with no tuition increase for the 2021-22 academic year, on-campus housing rates reduced by 30% and the ZAS, available to new students beginning fall 2021.

By Stephanie Fairchild, Social Media Editor

The University of Akron announced the creation of a scholarship that will enable Pell Grant-eligible students to receive four years of free tuition. The Zips Affordability Scholarship will cover the entire cost of tuition and the general fee after federal and state grants have been applied.

New students enrolling in the fall 2021 semester or later will only need to file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FASFA) form to determine their eligibility for a Federal Pell Grant.

If students are accepted into UA, are deemed Pell-eligible and live in one of the University’s primary six-county service areas (Cuyahoga, Medina, Portage, Stark, Summit, and Wayne counties) they will automatically receive the scholarship.

“The University of Akron prides itself on being a university of opportunity,” Cristine Boyd, Director of Media Relations, said. “This brand-new scholarship was created because we know the cost of college can be a barrier for financially challenged students and grants and scholarships don’t always cover tuition and fees. The Zips Affordability Scholarship will allow many more students from Northeast Ohio to attend UA and earn a degree.”

To maintain the scholarship, students must complete the FASFA every year, maintain good academic standing (2.0 GPA) and remain Pell-eligible. Students must also be enrolled full-time each semester.

Students will be able to receive the scholarship for all eight consecutive semesters (not counting summers) or until the completion of a bachelor’s degree, whichever comes first.

“While current UA students are not eligible for the ZAS, the University is proud to continue to Akron Guarantee Scholarship, which offers competitive, merit-based scholarship awards to Ohio residents,” Boyd continued. “These scholarships not only renew each year, but they also grow, all while guaranteeing that tuition will not increase.”

Non-Ohio resident students with a 3.0 GPA and a 20 ACT or 1020 SAT can also receive a $3,000 Akron Advantage Award, which applies to the non-resident fee.

UA also offers many specialty scholarships based on course study that students may be eligible for. Current students can schedule an appointment with the Office of Student Financial Aid by visiting to find out more about scholarship opportunities.