New bill blocks student debt

MISSISSIPPI COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - On Monday, the Mississippi County Quorum Court held a meeting and one of the topics discussed was the passing of the STEM Bill.

According to Sen. David Wallace, R-Leachville, the STEM Bill is going to be very beneficial for all students in Northeast Arkansas.

Wallace said the bill will allow high school graduates to obtain a tuition-free Associate's Degree.

"The STEM Bill is a great bill," he said. "Every young person coming out of high school---even those that have been out for years--if they pick a skill that is in need. That has a regional need. Nursing is one of them. Math is one of them. Any steel mill related skill is one of them. A student can go in 2-years of college and come out with an Associate's Degree and have no student debt."

However, there are a few requirements.

Wallace said students must complete 15 hours of community service every semester and graduates must live and work in Arkansas or the surrounding state for at least three years.

Wallace said if you're interested in the STEM program, you can contact your school's counselor or your college of choice admissions office for more information.

The STEM Bill will take effect in the fall semester of 2017.

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