Elizabeth Warren: ‘The First Boy I Ever Dated Swooped Back into My Life and Said He Wanted to Marry Me’ Staff
By Staff | April 24, 2019 | 2:04 PM EDT

Sen. Elizabeth Warren with then-presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire, Oct. 24, 2016. (Getty Images/Justin Sullivan)

In a column posted at, Sen. Elizabeth Warren explains how dropping out of college and getting married at 19 years of age could have ruined her life had she not gone back to college.

Now, she is calling for universal free college public education for everyone, funded by the government.

“I managed to get a college scholarship, but then things turned upside down,” Warren wrote on Medium. “The first boy I ever dated swooped back into my life and said he wanted to marry me. So I did what any sensible, mature 19-year-old would do: I said yes and dropped out of college.”

“I thought my dream of teaching was over,” Warren said. “But then a friend told me about the University of Houston, a public four-year college about 40 minutes away. We were a young couple, watching every nickel. I figured I couldn’t afford it. But it turned out that tuition was just $50 a semester.”

This early experience in her own life inspired her to propose a plan to have the government cover the expenses for everyone who goes to college.

Warren wrote:

“Like K-12 education, college is a basic need that should be available for free to everyone who wants to go. That’s why I’m proposing a historic new federal investment in public higher education that will eliminate the cost of tuition and fees at every public two-year and four-year college in America. The federal government will partner with states to split the costs of tuition and fees and ensure that states maintain their current levels of funding on need-based financial aid and academic instruction….

“To allow students to graduate debt-free — especially students from lower-income families — we must expand the funding available to cover non-tuition expenses….

“My plan for universal free college will:

“--Give every American the opportunity to attend a two-year or four-year public college without paying a dime in tuition or fees;

“--Make free college truly universal — not just in theory, but in practice — by making higher education of all kinds more inclusive and available to every single American, especially lower-income, Black, and Latinx students, without the need to take on debt to cover costs.”

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