Three Guarantees in Life

Donor support adds an affordable U-M education to life’s short list of guarantees

It’s commonly said that there are two guarantees in life: death and taxes. But thanks to the generous contributions of U-M donors, qualified in-state students can now add free U-M tuition to that otherwise dismal list. U-M’s Go Blue Guarantee premiered in the winter semester of 2018. Its promise is simple: four years of free tuition for qualified in-state students with family incomes below $65,000. “The notion is to tell them up front, if you’re talented and willing to work hard, regardless of what your family’s income is, we will find a way to help you afford a spectacular college education,” said U-M President Mark Schlissel.

Students celebrate at Spring Commencement 2017. Photo: Scott Soderberg, Michigan Photography

Alongside careful financial management of the university’s endowment, consistent donor support throughout the Victors for Michigan campaign has made this guarantee possible. With U-M’s endowment for student support growing by nearly $850 million across the scope of the campaign, the financial aid budget for Ann Arbor undergraduates has increased by an average of 11.3 percent per year. With the Go Blue Guarantee, U-M is now able to ensure that a combination of scholarships and grants will cover the cost of tuition and fees for qualified students. In the program’s first year, U-M saw a 24 percent increase in admissions applications from some of the state’s lowest-income communities.


“…if you’re talented and willing to work hard, regardless of what your family’s income is, we will find a way to help you afford a spectacular college education.”


Your support lends this university the confidence it needs to guarantee an affordable education to all students, not just those who qualify for the Go Blue Guarantee. Today, two out of three U-M undergraduates receive financial aid, with scholarship support extending to families with incomes up to $180,000 a year. As donor support continues to grow and the endowment grows alongside it, the university hopes to expand the Go Blue Guarantee—broadening the thresholds for in-state students and increasing the aid available for out-of-state students.

The Go Blue Guarantee represents the university’s continued commitment to its foundational missions of academic excellence, service to the public good, and accessibility to higher education. We recall the words and ideals of U-M’s longest-serving president, President James B. Angell: “To the historic life of this state, let us now hold wide open the gates of this university to all our sons and daughters.”



Interested in learning more about U-M’s Go Blue Guarantee? Visit

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