While aspirations to attend college are now more common among high school students, the opportunity to pursue higher education and complete a degree in order to enjoy the lifelong benefits of a college education varies widely by students’ race and socioeconomic background. Through financial support of public institutions, tax benefits for private institutions, student financial aid, and regulation of the higher education marketplace, state governments have the potential to mitigate these inequities for their residents. Yet with wide variation in how states fund, regulate, and govern their higher education systems, states also have different records of successfully educating a diverse student body.

Through a partnership with the Joyce Foundation, Ithaka S+R is evaluating the efficacy of a wide range of state policies in expanding college opportunity and closing attainment gaps.

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