The Boston Bridge

  • The City of Boston's Tuition-Free Community College Plan helps makes community college affordable. But the savings on your education don't have to stop there! The state of Massachusetts offers a similar program, Commonwealth Commitment, to make the continuation to four-year college more affordable, too. The Boston Bridge helps you take advantage of both programs. Through the Boston Bridge, you can attend community college and then transfer to a four-year college to finish your bachelor's degree at no cost.

    Aspiring to a bachelor's degree is a very worthwhile goal. Bachelor's degree holders make, on average, nearly $20,000 more per year than those who earn only an associate degree. (See a graph of average wages here.) Just remember that pursuing a bachelor's, and saving money through the Boston Bridge, will require extra work and commitment. You may be a good fit for the Boston Bridge program if you:

    • Want to earn your bachelor's degree
    • Have a good idea of which major you want to pursue
    • Can attend college full-time
    • Plan to earn a 3.0 GPA
    Read on to decide if you may want to take advantage of the Boston Bridge. The Boston Bridge is a pilot program, meaning it may only be available for a limited time – so if you're interested, act now!


    What is the Boston Bridge?

    The Boston Bridge is a collaboration between the city's Tuition-Free Community College Plan and the state's Commonwealth Commitment program. The program is designed to help students afford both community college and the final two years of their bachelor's degree at a four-year college. Boston Bridge students must meet the eligibility requirements of both programs in order to stay enrolled, but the payoff is significant: Boston Bridge students have the opportunity to earn both their associate and bachelor's degrees for free. 

    What are the benefits of the Boston Bridge?

    As a Boston Bridge student, you will earn the benefits of the Tuition-Free Community College Plan, as well as:
    • A financial contribution each semester to help with school-related expenses. This contribution is equal to 10% of the costs of your school's tuition and mandatory fees.
    • Complete payment of your tuition and mandatory fees during the final two years of your bachelor's degree.

    How do I become eligible for the Boston Bridge? 

    • Meet the requirements of the Tuition-Free Community College Plan
    • Have no more than 15 community college credits to start*
    • Finish your associate degree in 2.5 years
    • Finish your bachelor's degree in another 2 years
    • Attend school continuously, full-time
    • Maintain a cumulative 3.0 GPA
    • Commit to one of 16 popular majors
    DACA/TPS students are not eligible at this time. 

    *Includes developmental course credits

    Which majors can I pursue as a Boston Bridge student? 

    Apart from particular exceptions for students who plan to transfer to MassArt or Massachusetts Maritime Academy*, Boston Bridge students should plan to pursue one of the majors below:

    Communications & Media Studies
    Computer Science
    Criminal Justice
    Early Childhood Education
    Liberal Arts
    Political Science
    STEM Natural/ Physical Sciences
    To learn which associate degrees at Bunker Hill Community College, MassBay Community College, or Roxbury Community College can lead into which bachelor's degrees at particular four-year colleges, please use this helpful interactive guide.

    * Students who plan to attend MassArt may pursue any MassArt major, from visual arts to design to education. Students who plan to attend Massachusetts Maritime Academy may pursue: Emergency Management, Energy Systems Engineering, Facilities Engineering, International Maritime Business, or Marine Safety & Environmental Protection.

    Which four-year colleges can I transfer to as a Boston Bridge student? 

    You can attend any UMass campus or Massachusetts state university. See the list below or this map of UMass campuses and state universities.
    Bridgewater State University
    Fitchburg State University
    Framingham State University
    Massachusetts College of Art & Design (MassArt)
    Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
    Massachusetts Maritime Academy
    Salem State University
    Westfield State University
    Worcester State University

    When should I enroll in the Boston Bridge? 

    You should apply for the Boston Bridge at the same time that you enroll in the Tuition-Free Community College Plan. If you are worried about meeting the Boston Bridge eligibility requirements, just know that there is no extra penalty for enrolling and then falling short of those requirements. You would simply no longer be enrolled in the program. (However, you may remain in the Tuition-Free Community College Plan for as long as you meet its eligibility requirements.)

    How do I apply to the Boston Bridge? 

    It's easy! On your Tuition-Free Community College Plan application, simply check the box that says, "I am interested in the Boston Bridge." A specialist from your community college will help you determine your eligibility and fill out the application.