Developing State Policy that Supports Low-income, Working Students
Duke-Benfield, Amy E.
Garcia, Rosa M.
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Students and state policymakers clearly understand how important postsecondary education is to financial wellbeing and state economic productivity. Those with associate or bachelor’s degrees earn 31 percent and 77 percent more, respectively, than people with a high school diploma. And college graduates are less likely to be unemployed. This report lays out an action framework that the higher education leaders, nonprofit advocates, state policymakers, and postsecondary students we gathered during an April 2018 roundtable agree are needed to support the educational success of low-income working students, particularly students of color. It also examines how states must expand their policies beyond the traditional postsecondary landscape to acknowledge the complexity of these students’ lives.