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Mission

We are students fighting for free college in California. Public colleges and universities were free in California for more than 100 years. Join us in working to restore that promise.

1 Million

The number of residents rejected by public universities since 2005.

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Join the Movement

300 Percent

The increase in public university tuition in California in the last 20 years.

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Take Action on Your Campus

Fight for Free College Tuition

Our grassroots campaign is led by students and supporters like you. With your help, we can make California a state where hard work and talent -- not income or wealth -- determines your success in college and beyond.

Lead the Movement

Apply now to organize with Rise on your campus

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$1.2 Billion

The amount of student loan debt held by over 4 million student loan borrowers in California.

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  • "College should be free because it will make it easier for more people to get a higher education, which will increase the intellectual worth of our country.” -Ryan, Cal Poly SLO
  • Thank you to everyone who stopped by our 1️⃣ year bday party last week! 🎈🎉 We hope you had as much fun as our team did✨ #FlashbackFriday
  • 🚨The new VoteCrew website is live🚨⠀
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Organize your friends, classmates, and co-workers to go vote on November 6th! 🗳 (Link in bio)
  • "There’s a huge difference between equity and equality. If college was free, it would help bring equity to these communities." -Fernando, UCLA
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"In the current system we live in, college is really the only way to navigate your way through society. A bachelor's degree is the new high school diploma. I’m a first generation American and college student. I want to create a life where I don’t have to live paycheck to paycheck. I’m a transfer student and went to community college to save money, but I’ll be $20,000 in debt after graduating. I also want to go to law school, so I have no idea how much debt I’ll be in when I’m ready to start my career. College should be free because the current system just isn’t equitable. Those communities that (historically speaking) don’t thrive, are forced to stay in the same place while those who do thrive will always be successful. There’s a huge difference between equity and equality. If college was free, it would help bring equity to these communities." -Fernando, UCLA
  • “I decided to go to college because I felt my future depended on it." -Judith Ohan, UCR
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"Originally I wanted to be a doctor, but the more I learned about different subjects, I realized I wanted to influence policy makers who create the health policies that affect our daily lives. I want to help improve how low income communities get health care. I got a lot of scholarship money and many grants to pay for school, but at one point I was working two jobs to pay for my housing. I’m also a former foster youth, so I get no financial help from parents. I support free college because it will make college more accessible for low income students. People want to make a change but tuition and food insecurity is holding us back!” -Judith Ohan, UCR
  • Today is Rise’s official 1st birthday. 🎈🎉 Over the past year, we have amplified thousands of student voices and heard countless stories about what it’s really like to be a college student. To bring more voices to the table, donate to our #CelebrateOurStudents fundraiser via the link in bio or share this post. --
"When I was 15, during my junior year of high school, I ran away from an abusive household and was thereafter forced into financial independence at a time when I was already struggling to find the money for basic necessities. I worked at multiple jobs my last two years in high school and interned for an organization to earn a stipend. I still struggled to pay for the expenses of high school as I received minimal familial support financially. I conditioned myself to be satisfied with 1-2 meals a day, driving on an empty gas tank, and constantly asking for money. It was incredibly difficult to maintain this lifestyle through the school year. I managed to save a whopping 60 dollars by the end of high school. I barely had the money to purchase gas to make the trip from San Lorenzo to San Diego. Although I qualified for grants and I earned two scholarships, I still have to take out three loans totaling five thousand just for my first year in college just to take care of tuition and housing. Other expenses that come along with attending a university have totaled nearly one and a half thousand dollars that is unaccounted for in my budget and classes haven't even started yet. I expect to again work at a near minimum wage job and receive very little contribution from my family. A free or reduced tuition would help me afford to live comfortably - a luxury I've never experienced as a black first-generation immigrant from a low-income family." -Malik Gilbert, UCSD
  • "College should be free because education is one of our equalizers. No matter where you’re born, education can help you achieve your dreams.” -Michael, SDSU
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“I go to college to have a nice life and a good future for myself and my family. My dreams are big and require an education. I was lucky enough to have a professor as a father so I knew college was the path was for me. I was privileged enough to get a full ride scholarship, the Presidential Scholars at SDSU, that covers my tuition for 4 years, but I know not everyone has that privilege. The scholarship helps a lot, but not with everything. I worry about housing, I take out loans, my parents help me with textbooks and things like my laptop. College should be free because education is one of our equalizers. No matter where you’re born, education can help you achieve your dreams.” -Michael, SDSU
  • “I was both working and getting financial aid so that I could pay for classes, books, tuition, etc. I played poker to pay for school supplies (i.e. calculators, notebooks, Microsoft office, etc.) that my financial aid didn’t cover - the little things that get overshadowed that not many colleges offer in full or at all. I also worked about 20-30 hours because that’s all I could handle." -Jesse, Cuesta College
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"College is an opportunity for growth both personally and academically. I went to college to invest in a potential career or at least find a path that suited me. I also went to college to understand how the system changes from a high-school view to a more adult-oriented way of teaching. More requirements, more team based activities, more research and so on. It was both an interest and a dedication to further growth. I was both working and getting financial aid so that I could pay for classes, books, tuition, etc. I played poker to pay for school supplies (i.e. calculators, notebooks, Microsoft office, etc.) that my financial aid didn’t cover - the little things that get overshadowed that not many colleges offer in full or at all. I also worked about 20-30 hours because that’s all I could handle.  As far as college being free, all I can say is that if we as the younger generation are expected to support ourselves and the community, how can we do so when we get looked down upon for not being able to afford college?” -Jesse, Cuesta College
  • “People need to receive an education if they want to break down barriers and move forward in their lives, but how can they do that if no one can afford to?" -Priya, UCLA⠀
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I’m making a career transition and am here to get my Master’s Degree in Business. I pay for school through scholarships, help from my family, and loans. I expect to be anywhere between $40,000-60,000 in debt when I finish my MBA. People need to receive an education if they want to break down barriers and move forward in their lives, but how can they do that if no one can afford to? If tuition was free, there would be less barriers and more people could go.” -Priya, UCLA
  • At the beginning of the summer the UC Regents announced a $60 tuition rollback for next year. DYK there hasn’t been a tuition roll back since the 1990s? A $60 tuition rollback is just the beginning. Help us roll tuition back to ZERO by donating to Rise’s #CelebrateOurStudents fundraiser at bit.ly/RiseFirstBirthday or sharing this post.

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