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Education

National University To Cut Tuition In Half After Denny Sanford's Historic $350M Gift

San Diego philanthropist Denny Sanford speaks at National University's La Jolla campus, October 8, 2019.
Andi Dukleth
San Diego philanthropist Denny Sanford speaks at National University's La Jolla campus, October 8, 2019.

National University on Tuesday announced a five-year plan to expand nationally and cut tuition costs by more than half thanks to a historic donation.

With a $350 million gift from San Diego philanthropist Denny Sanford, the non-profit, private college hopes to double its student body and bring down tuition costs from $13,000 to $5,000. To honor the benefactor, the university will be officially renamed Sanford National University in July 2020.

National University To Cut Tuition In Half After Denny Sanford's Historic $350M Gift
Listen to this story by Joe Hong.

“National University is one of the best-kept secrets in town and in the country, but we’re gonna change that,” Sanford said at the university’s La Jolla campus.

National University currently serves about 45,000 students. Within the next five years, the university hopes to surpass 100,000 students.

“Unlike many philanthropists who have selected selective universities, we have an opportunity here with Denny Sanford to serve adult learners in a way that’s never been anticipated before,” said David Andrews, president of National University.

National University was established in 1971 and offers online and in-person classes for students across 37 locations.

Sanford previously donated $150 million to the university, specifically for education programs. In 2015, the university renamed its school of education the Sanford College of Education.

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