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tag: Low-income students

Past Event
March 12, 2024

Sharpening the Social-Mobility Mission

In a virtual forum hosted by The Chronicle of Higher Education with support from Ascendium, higher education experts will explore the connection between college degrees and social mobility, covering topics including college rankings and classifications, post-graduate outcomes, and strategies to ensure success for low-income students. The session will be hosted by Eric Kelderman, with panelists Elizabeth Davidson Pisacreta, Akil Bellow, Mary Dana Hinton, and Ellen J. Nuefledt. Register to join the forum on Tuesday, March 12 at 2pm ET.
Blog Post
September 5, 2023

Parental Income, State Funding, and Access to Higher Education

Questions about who gets into America’s most prestigious colleges and why have been at the center of American discourse recently. In June, the Supreme Court struck down the use of race-conscious admissions practices in higher education. And soon after the Court’s decision, a federal civil rights complaint was filed against Harvard University for its use of legacy admissions, which disproportionately benefits white, affluent students. New research by Opportunity Insights adds to the conversation with a robust…
Issue Brief
March 15, 2021

Federal Policies for Increasing Socioeconomic Diversity at Selective Colleges and Universities

Earning a bachelor’s degree is increasingly important to an individual’s longer-term economic prospects. Communities, at all levels, also benefit when their members earn postsecondary credentials, through improved economic, social, and health outcomes. Yet, despite an increase in college participation over the last two decades, severe inequities in bachelor’s degree attainment remain; inequities that often leave lower-income and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color) students with debt and no or low-value credentials. With Democrats coalescing around a number of federal…
Blog Post
March 27, 2019

Three Questions for Giuseppe Basili

For our most recent newsletter, we interviewed Giuseppe “Seppy” Basili, the executive director of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation (JKCF), a foundation dedicated to advancing the education of exceptionally promising students who have financial need. In this interview, Basili addresses how JKCF’s mission has evolved, what new initiatives it is undertaking, and the challenges the foundation faces as it seeks greater access to higher education for high-achieving, low-income students.  1. You’ve been with…
Blog Post
October 24, 2017

New Graduation Data on Pell Recipients Reveals a Gap in Outcomes

In 2015-16, the federal government disbursed more than $28 billion under the Pell Grant program to 7.6 million students, representing almost 40 percent of undergraduates in the United States. Because eligibility for the grant depends largely on financial need, many researchers use it as a proxy for income, although there are limitations. Despite the size and scope of the program and its importance in socioeconomic and higher education research, outcomes of Pell recipients have not been readily available.
Blog Post
August 30, 2016

Can Financial Aid for Non-Traditional Education Programs Help Low-Income Students?

Last October, the federal Department of Education announced the launch of Educational Quality through Innovative Partnerships (EQUIP), a pilot program inviting partnerships between non-traditional education providers and accredited institutions of higher education. A key component of the program is its target population: low- and moderate-income students. Under a provision of the Higher Education Act, accredited institutions are ineligible to receive federal financial aid for programs in which 50 percent or more of the content and instruction is provided by…
Blog Post
July 14, 2016

Does Financial Aid Help Those Who Need it Most?

As tuition and fees at public and private not-for-profit four-year institutions continue to rise, so does the role of financial assistance, particularly for low- and moderate-income students. Yet, recent reports show that the distribution of financial aid is far from equitable. Last month, an Atlantic article highlighted an array of college-affordability efforts–including private and employer grants, the federal work-study program, and federal tax credits–that often fail to provide financial assistance to those that need it most. For instance,…
Blog Post
June 14, 2016

The Perfect Demographic Storm

This month, some 3.3 million teenagers will graduate from American high schools. If recent history is any guide, around 65 percent of them will go directly on to college this fall. While many more campuses are being filled with nontraditional students—working adults, part-timers, and international students—the traditional 18-to-22-year-old market remains the lifeblood of many institutions and is also the most predictable segment to forecast. For much of the past decade, demographers have been talking about not only a…
Blog Post
May 18, 2016

Will Easing the Financial Burden of Dual Enrollment Improve College Outcomes for Low-Income Students?

As I’ve noted previously, the percentage of low-income (family income in the bottom 20 percent) high school graduates that have enrolled in two- and four-year institutions declined from 55.9 percent in 2008 to 45.5 percent in 2013. Studies examining dual enrollment programs—in which students take courses for college credit while still in high school—have found that participating in such programs increases the likelihood of college degree attainment, especially for low-income students. Yet low-income students tend to have…
Blog Post
April 4, 2016

Trends in College Net Price for Low-Income Students

Last week, New America’s Stephen Burd published a report showing that low-income students who receive Pell grants still face a substantial financial burden to attend college, especially at private not-for-profit institutions. Looking at the average net price—“the average amount of money that students and their families have to pay after all grant and scholarship aid is deducted from the listed price”—of low-income students attending 1,400 four-year institutions, Burd found that 94 percent of the private not-for-profit institutions he studied…
Blog Post
February 4, 2016

Starting from Scratch: Lessons from Guttman Community College

A growing number of America’s community colleges are redesigning their curricula, advising services, faculty development programs, and relationships with four-year institutions in order to help more students succeed. In most cases, reforms take place within existing operating structures, as gradual processes of cultural and institutional change. In contrast to institutions that reorganize existing operations around student success, Stella and Charles Guttman Community College, the newest of the City University of New York’s seven community colleges, started with a relatively blank…
Case Study
February 4, 2016

Student Success by Design

CUNY’s Guttman Community College

A growing number of American community colleges are redesigning their curricula, advising services, faculty development programs, and relationships with four year institutions in order to help more students succeed. In most cases, reforms take place within existing operating structures, as gradual processes of cultural and institutional change. A response to dismal persistence and completion rates at community colleges, Guttman was designed, from its inception, to incorporate research-based practices for helping first-generation and low-income students at community colleges succeed. At Stella…
Blog Post
November 12, 2015

Is Changing the Application Process Enough to Improve Access to Selective Colleges?

No, But It’s a Start

Last month, a consortium of 83 selective public and private universities unveiled a plan to build a new college application system. The Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success plans to develop a “free platform of online tools to streamline the experience of applying to college.” The most notable part of this platform would be its “virtual locker,” a portfolio in which students could store different types of content—from creative work, to class projects, to teacher recommendations—beginning in ninth…
Blog Post
September 29, 2015

Testing the Impact of Proactive Advising

A growing body of research has attributed at least part of the gap in degree completion between low- and high-income undergraduates to low-income students’ difficulty navigating the terrain of academic choices in college. Deciding on a major, choosing courses, and recognizing a warning sign and knowing what to do about it are all more challenging for students who have less background familiarity with college. Ill-informed choices have real consequences: A student’s failure to register for even a…
Blog Post
June 17, 2015

Earning College Credit Before College

A Worthwhile Investment

As college costs rise and student success rates stagnate, states and institutions of higher education have grappled with creative ways to improve student outcomes – particularly for those who are traditionally underserved. Recently, policymakers have increasingly turned to programs that target students even before they enroll full time in college, by implementing and expanding dual enrollment options that allow students to earn college credit while in high school. In theory, dual enrollment programs (along with programs like Advanced Placement…