Initial College Attendance of Low-Income Young Adults
The Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) has a report out that shows the colleges low-income students head for first tend to be for-profit schools. That particular population is underrepresented in four-year public and private colleges, and overrepresented in the for-profit schools. All of which is not new, but it does mean fairness in higher education has still not been achieved.
From the brief:
INITIAL COLLEGE ATTENDANCE OF LOW-INCOME YOUNG ADULTS
More than 2.3 million low-income young adults began postsecondary education in 2008. Where these students initially enroll is of greater consequence than it is to their economically better-off peers because the likelihood of completing college for students from low-income backgrounds depends strongly on where they start their studies. This brief examines the types of postsecondary institutions where low- income young adults begin. Focusing on the starting point in low-income students’ postsecondary experiences will lead to later investigations of other key factors that influence their persistence and completion prospects, as well as labor market outcomes.
In the context of national completion goals, inducing more low-income young adults to participate in postsecondary education is deeply important. Yet enrollment data over the past decade indicate that certain types of institutions have seen their ranks swell substantially. While all sectors of higher education—two-year1 and four-year, private and public—are expected to bestow benefits upon their graduates, the types of institutions where low-income young adults are increasingly likely to enroll provide the least clear or certain educational and economic advantages (Bound, Lovenheim, and Turner 2010; IHEP 2002).
With these trends in mind, our analysis addresses two key questions:
What types of postsecondary institutions are low-income young adults first attending?
To what extent have the initial enrollment patterns of low-income young adults, especially females and certain racial/ethnic minorities, shifted over time, and to which types of postsecondary institutions?
Posted by Alexa Harrington