It’s been a while since this press release, but it’s still valid for those that don’t know about the program.
Microsoft DreamSpark is a program that provides all of the development and design tools to students at no charge. If you can be authenticated via their service, then you can download everything from Visual Studio to Expression. I even saw XNA Game Studio which was something that I would have been semi-interested in.
Unfortunately, this program is only limited to college students in the countries of Belgium, China, Finland, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the U.K. and the United States. There is however a move to open this program up to high school students globally which will happen probably sometime this year.
One of the perks of being a student is all of the free software you can get legally. At one point it was only the computer science and information technology departments. It seems that Microsoft is opening its doors to everyone else now… and that’s pretty frackin’ cool.