Question of the Day: Why Are Fewer People Going to College?

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Sep 30, 2014
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Career, Paying for College, Question of the Day

College-enrollment-Census-Bureau-1024x765

Good opportunity to engage students in some critical thinking including interpreting data and reasoning skills as well as understanding the value of a college degree.

The chart above shows the downward trend.  PBS NewsHour highlights the factors at work here:

  • Strengthening economy and more jobs reduce flow to colleges.  The opposite occurs in a down economy.
  • This slight decrease follows boom of 3.2 million students between 2006-2011.
  • Sharper reduction in 2 year colleges where enrollment dropped by 10% while enrollment at four year colleges increased by 1%.
  • Among income groups, sharpest drop-off was among middle class students.
    • Could cost be an issue in particular for this group?
  • Value of a college education remains as strong as ever as the chart below shows
    • Students can see among Millenials that the gap between college educated students and high school graduates is increasing.

SDT-higher-education-02-11-2014-0-03

About the Author

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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