Wayne State University Case Study: Giving Students a Second Chance at Success Through Debt Forgiveness
Research from the Financial Health Network shows that removing financial barriers for students can help them succeed both financially and academically. Learn how Wayne State University is working to develop effective tools for student success through the “Warrior Way Back,” a unique debt forgiveness program.



Top Takeaways

Debt forgiveness programs like the one at Wayne State are on the rise, as schools move to address the growing number of students who drop out because of small-dollar financial obligations.

These programs target students who have accumulated a significant number of credits toward their degrees, but stopped their education for an extended period of time.

13,000 former students in the Detroit metropolitan area have attended Wayne State University, but have not earned a degree.

Since July 2018, Wayne State University has offered the Warrior Way Back program to adults who stopped their education for two or more years with a GPA of at least 2.0.

Warrior Way Back will forgive an outstanding balance of up to $1,500 incrementally over three semesters if students return to school, maintain a minimum 2.5 GPA, and take a minimum of 6 credit hours each semester.

Data Spotlight

The Warrior Way Back program has helped hundreds of students return to school – generating new revenue and promoting a culture of caring that extends beyond the classroom. 

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This research is generously supported by the MetLife Foundation.