Getting to the Diploma

In another take on why more low-income students don’t graduate from college, Monica Potts in the American Prospect points out that,

While about 60 percent of low-income students enter a post-secondary program at some point, only about 11 percent earn a degree.

High-achieving low-income students would benefit by a system that helps them get into better schools, but more average students, whose white and wealthier counterparts do well by comparison, would benefit from more colleges that support them and refuse to let them drop out.

This is an interesting suggestion, though as Emmeline Zhao explains in an article in the Wall Street Journal, low-income students aren’t even getting to four-year schools at the rates they used to: “enrollment in four-year colleges was 40% in 2004 for low-income students, down from 54% in 1992.”

In fact, according to research cited by Potts and Zhao, it looks like pretty much anyone can succeed in and graduate from a four-year school, provided he has academic and financial support to do so.

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer