- A new report from the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education and the University of Pennsylvania’s Alliance for Higher Education and Democracy shows that poor students have a more difficult time obtaining a college degree today than 45 years ago.
- Families and students paid more than half of the revenue for higher ed in 2012, compared to one-third in 1980, according to "Indicators of Higher Education Equity in the U.S."
- The data also shows that for-profit two-year and four-year colleges have more students from low-income families than any other types of higher education institutions.
While not surprising, the report lays out the detailed numbers that show how low-income families are getting squeezed by the combination of lower financial aid grants and higher tuition prices. For 18- to 24-year-olds in the top quartile of family income, 81% went to college in 2012, compared to 45% for the same age group in the bottom quartile of family income. In 1975, the maximum Pell Grant covered 67% of average college costs, but by 2012, that figure had fallen to 27%.