In its current inception, Berea College provides all students with full tuition support, leaving the student to pay only room and board costs. There is additional financial assistance available to help cover these costs based on need. Historically, the price of admission to Berea College has varied from "a desire to learn," to "the price of one head of livestock." Admission is granted only to students who are in need of financial assistance; applicants not in need of financial assitance are turned away.
As if its history didn't make it unique enough, Berea College is unique in another way. It is one of just a handful of colleges which form the Work Colleges Consortium. The labor program at Berea is set up such that every student who enters is assigned a job on campus, from busing tables at the Boone Tavern, to managing the hanging and focusing of lights for the Theatre Lab's productions. Each student is paid a wage per hour, but part of the work goes to pay off what is called the "Labor Grant." Each student agrees to work a certain number of hours when they enter the college, in return for a full tuition scholarship.
Berea's sports teams are called the "Mountaineers." They compete in the NAIA's Kentucky Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
On a last note, Berea College has one of the largest financial reserves of any college. Last estimate exceeded $700 million.