President Robert J. Zimmer introduces the UChicago Promise initiative on Oct. 29 at Kenwood Academy High School in Hyde Park. UChicago Promise is a multipronged effort to help college-bound students from Chicago. (Photography by Robert Kozloff)

Promising statistics

A program to reduce the financial and psychological obstacles to the college application process makes an impact in its first year.

Percentage increase in Chicago-area high school students applying to the College in the first year of UChicago Promise, which waives admission fees and replaces loans with grants for accepted students: 48.8

Total amount in application fees that the program waived for Chicago families: $89,475

Number of students and families who participated in workshops on admissions essays, interviews, and financial aid: 1,100

Number of Chicago high school students who enrolled in the Class of 2017: 73

Value of grants, in millions, to those students, who will graduate debt-free as part of a UChicago Promise pledge: $2.2