Complex Financial Aid System Leaves First-Generation and Low-Income Students Behind

Paperwork” by Filippo Diotalevi licensed under CC BY 2.0

Source: Vox

During the period between high school graduation and a new college year, thousands of students end up not attending college after all, according to one study.

This applies particularly to students from low-income homes, with at least one in five who intended to go to college never actually enrolling.

The study, conducted by researchers Benjamin Castleman and Lindsay Page, explored this phenomenon referred to as the “summer melt” and found that this period is more likely to affect low-income students across the board.

In Boston, at least 22 percent of students from low-income students who intended to enroll in college didn’t actually end up going, while 18 percent of affluent students who intended on attending didn’t go to college.

The disparity holds true for students intending to go to community college, with 13 percent of low-income students not going, and 8 percent of affluent students not going after all.

The study found that students are discouraged during summer when they have to navigate complicated financial situations on their own without school counselors, such as figuring out how to apply for college aid or pulling out thousands of dollars in loans.

One of the main factors in a student deciding to go to college is their ability to understand how to enroll in the first place. Students who have parents that attended college are more likely to navigate complex financial systems that first-generation college students who are on their own otherwise.

Read Full Story: Vox

Education, Justice & Poverty, News
Education, Justice & Poverty, News