Class of '88 Sets College Enrollment Record

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

A record 59 percent of graduates of the class of 1988—about 2.7 million—went on to college, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

The number of college-bound seniors has remained roughly the same since 1975. The percentage has increased eight points during the past 15 years because the precollegiate school population is lower today than it was when the last of the baby boomers were going through high school.

No one knows why more of this generation's graduates chose to attend college, but U.S. Labor Department economist Sharon Cohany ventures some guesses. "Generally, the labor force is better educated, and there is a perception on the part of high school students that many of the good jobs are accessible only through a college degree," she says. "Also, community colleges are filling a large need, making it easier and more affordable for people to go to college."

According to the Labor Department, 61 percent of white high school graduates chose higher education in 1988--an increase of almost 10 percentage points since the mid-1970's. Hispanics held steady at 57 percent, with only a few minor fluctuations in college enrollment since 1975. Black college enrollment lagged far behind, but remained stable at 45 percent--a percentage point lower than in 1975.

All figures are based on the Current Population Survey, a monthly tally of 56,000 households. The margin of error is plus or minus 2 percent.

Vol. 01, Issue 01, Page 44

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories

Viewed

Emailed

Recommended

Commented

MORE EDUCATION JOBS >>