Getting Ahead or Losing Ground: Mobility in America
The increasing prevalence of unequal access to higher education for poor and minority students is contributing to a decrease in their economic and social mobility, concludes a study by three researchers at the Washington-based Brookings Institution, a public-policy think tank.
The study found that Hispanics and African-Americans are entering college at lower rates than whites and Asians, and that, as a result, fewer nonwhites are entering the middle class.
According to the report, 41 percent of people in the United States who lived in poor families but obtained college degrees were among the top 40 percent of adult income earners.
The authors also found that a majority of African-American children from middle-class backgrounds entered a lower economic bracket after reaching adulthood than they had grown up in.
A version of this article appeared in the February 27, 2008 edition of Education Week